Grey Teal Video Transcript
Grey Teal are found all over Australia. They're the most numerous game bird we have. The pale, almost white neck of Grey Teal is easy to see if you are close, but at a distance this feature isn't always so obvious.
To identify Grey Teal, it's better to identify the pattern of white on the wings. There's a small white patch close to the body on the underwing. And an equally obvious white patch in the centre of the upperwing. The white wing patches of Grey Teal are easily seen on flying birds, even at great distances and in poor light.
On these two birds, you can just make out the pale neck, but much more obvious is the white patch on the underwing of the rear bird. On the front bird, this white patch is in shadow. But as they beat their wings, the view changes. Now the white patches on the upperwing show. Although you need to be quick in identifying ducks, don't be in too much of a hurry. Waiting a few seconds can help a lot.
The overall colour of Grey Teal is a mottled grey brown with a pale, almost white neck. They're found in most freshwater swamps. Only the female Grey Teal produces the laughing call that's so well known to all hunters. When alarmed or alert, the head is held up high.
On the wing, Grey Teal are easily identified by the small, white wing patches above and below the wings. They usually fly quickly with many twists and turns.
You can find Grey Teal in most wetlands throughout Australia, as single birds, in small groups, and often in quite large flocks. They will also mix with other species, so don't assume that all the birds in the flock are Grey Teal.
From the front, they're not so easy to recognise. You need to get a glimpse of the white wing patches to be really positive. Even at a distance, this wing pattern shows up well. So for Grey Teal in the field, look for these points: pale face and neck, underwing white patches near the body, and a white patch on the upperwing. Note the size and position.
The call is another feature to remember. Grey Teal are legal game in the proclaimed hunting seasons in all Australian states.