A male canvasback (Aythya valisineria) is a large distinctive-looking duck with rusty red head, black chest and rear and a white body. A female canvasback, with its light brown head and breast and pale grey sides and back, is much less colorful. Both sexes have a dark bill.

A diving duck, the canvasback eats aquatic vegetation, snails and insect larvae.

Canvasbacks winter in Central America, across the South and eastern and western coastal areas, moving north for the breeding season. We, in Northeastern California, only see this elegant waterfowl during migration.

These canvasbacks were photographed at Tule Lake Wildlife Area (Siskiyou County CA).


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