Michigan Ducks 101: Identifying the Different Types of Ducks in Michigan

Types of Ducks in Michigan

Michigan is home to a variety of duck species due to its abundant freshwater lakes, rivers, and wetland habitats. Here are some common types of ducks you may find in Michigan:

1. Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos)

Mallards are the most common duck species found in Michigan. Male Mallards have a green head, yellow bill, and gray body, while females have a mottled brown appearance. They can be seen in lakes, ponds, rivers, and marshes across the state.

2. Wood Duck (Aix sponsa)

Wood Ducks are beautifully colored ducks that are commonly found in Michigan. Male Wood Ducks have distinctive multicolored plumage with a green crest, red eyes, and a white throat. Females have a grayish-brown appearance. They prefer wooded wetlands and forested areas near water bodies.

3. American Black Duck (Anas rubripes)

American Black Ducks are medium-sized ducks that can be found in Michigan. They have a dark brown body and a pale face with a yellow bill. They are often found in marshes, ponds, and shallow wetland habitats.

4. Northern Pintail (Anas acuta)

Northern Pintails are migratory ducks that pass through Michigan during their spring and fall migrations. Male Northern Pintails have a long, slender neck and a pointed tail. They have a brown body with a white breast and a distinctive chocolate-brown head. Females have a mottled brown appearance. They can be found in various wetland habitats, including marshes, lakes, and flooded fields.

5. Blue-winged Teal (Spatula discors)

Blue-winged Teals are migratory ducks that visit Michigan during their spring and fall migrations. Male Blue-winged Teals have a grayish-brown body with a white crescent on their face and a distinctive blue patch on their wings. Females have a mottled brown appearance. They are commonly found in wetlands, marshes, and shallow ponds.

6. Common Merganser (Mergus merganser)

Common Mergansers are large diving ducks that can be found in Michigan. Male Common Mergansers have a striking appearance with a greenish-black head, a white body, and a slender red bill. Females have a gray body with a reddish-brown head. They are often seen on lakes, rivers, and larger water bodies.

These are just a few examples of the many duck species that can be found in Michigan. Exploring the state’s diverse waterways and wetland habitats offers opportunities to observe and appreciate the rich diversity of ducks in their natural environments.