Bio Facts: Teal, Lesser Brazilian
Lesser Brazilian Teal
Amazonetta brasiliensis brasiliensis
Eastern South America: Brazil, Suriname, Guyana, French Guiana, central Venezuela, eastern Colombia, and northeastern Peru
Freshwater away from the coast with dense vegetation nearby
Adult length: 14.5 – 15.4 in (37 – 39 cm); adult weight: 12.3 – 17 oz (350 – 480 g); appearance & coloration: light brown in color. Drakes distinguish themselves from females in having red beaks and legs, and in having a distinctive pale grey area on the side of its head and neck. The color of these limbs is much duller in females.
20 – 30 years
1 – 2 years
In the wild, they eat seeds, fruits, roots and insects; in the Zoo, they are fed a scientifically developed, commercially available pelleted waterfowl diet with greens and insects.
IUCN – Least Concern
Brazilian ducks live in pairs or in small groups of up to twenty birds. They can be found dabbling in shallow water as they forage.
Breeding season varies with geographical location. Nesting has been observed September to October in Guyana. Solitary nests are mounds of vegetation, sometimes floating, in rushes or sedge hammocks surrounded by water. Occasionally, this teal will nest in tree hollows, abandoned nests of other birds in trees, and possibly on cliff sides. Females lay 6 – 8 eggs and incubate them for approximately 25 days. Both parents look after their hatchlings. Young fledge at 50 to 60 days. Pair bonds appear to be strong and possibly permanent.
The lesser Brazilian teal is the only duck in the genus Amazonetta. It was formerly considered a “perching duck”, but more recent analyses indicate that it belongs to a clade of South American dabbling ducks which also includes the Crested Duck, the Bronze-winged Duck, and possibly the steamer ducks.
This species has an extremely large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion. The population trend appears to be stable, and hence the species does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion. The population size is very large, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion. For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.
Jacksonville Zoo History:
Part of the Jacksonville Zoo’s animal inventory from 1969 to 1976 and 1988 to 1991, the lesser Brazilian teal was brought back again in 2003.