5 things

5 Things you may or may not know about Plumed Whistling-Duck

Sunday, 1 October 2023

  • Estimated reading time 1 minute

5 Things you may or may not know about Plumed Whistling-Ducks

  1. While White-plumed and Yellow-plumed Honeyeaters are named for the insignificant plumes on their necks, the Plumed Whistling-Duck instead has long, buff-coloured plumes protruding from its flanks.
  2. Before the 1950s, Plumed Whistling-Ducks were unknown from southern Australia, but after major floods in 1956, they suddenly colonised the Riverina region of inland NSW, and they can still be seen there today.
  3. Plumed Whistling-Ducks sometimes congregate to roost in vast, noisy flocks which may number thousands of birds.
  4. Although Plumed Whistling-Ducks generally make only local seasonal movements between different habitats, sometimes individuals may travel surprisingly long distances, with one bird flying from Rockhampton in Queensland all the way to Deniliquin in the Riverina; and some birds very occasionally fly across the Tasman Sea.
  5. Although their wings whistle when they fly, Plumed Whistling-Ducks are named for their high-pitched whistling call. Flocks often emit a continuous loud din which may be heard from far away.