The Cape Bird Club

Ducks of Southern Africa breeding and nesting info required.

Prof. Graeme Cumming from the Percy FitzPatrick Institute, University of Cape Town has a request to anyone who has past, and who will collect future duck breeding and or nesting records.

photograph by Greg Morgan                            photograph by Greg Morgan                       photograph by Morne Carstens

White backed Duck                           Spurwinged Goose                        Southern Pochard.



I am in the process of compiling existing data on the breeding patterns of ducks (including 'geese') for sub-Saharan Africa. The goal of the analysis is to try to connect breeding periods in different places to movements, given that we already have several years of satellite telemetry data for a couple of species of duck.

What is required.

The minimum data items that I am interested in are;

  • species,
  • date,
  • place (as precisely as possible), and
  • whether you saw a nest or ducklings.

Additional information on things like

  • numbers of eggs,
  • ages of ducklings and/or
  • habitat type is also potentially useful.

The majority of our nest card information is from the 1960 - 70s, so this is also an appeal to submit new nest records - even for common species like Egyptian Geese, we still have a relatively poor understanding of spatial variation in the timing of breeding and exactly how this relates to the timing of moult and movement.

The species list.

There are 16 duck (including shelduck, teal and 'goose') species in the Sasol guide - Spurwing, Egyptian, and Pygmy are all ducks rather than true geese - and we are interested in data for all of them, and for wild Mallards too, although the ranges of some of the birds in Sasol are far to the north and I very much doubt that observers in the Cape will see more than about 7 species breeding.

Submit your records

To me  and also copy them to  and I will make sure that your data are also added to the data set.

Thank you.


photograph by Ann Koeslag

White faced Duck and Redbilled Teal.


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