Long-Tailed Duck

Scientific name: Clangula hyemalis

Did you know: The Long-Tailed Duck is a diving champion, capable of reaching depths of 60 metres in search of food!

What Do Long-Tailed Ducks Look Like? (How to Identify Them)

Long-Tailed Ducks are small, elegantly shaped sea ducks, notable for their round-shaped heads and steep foreheads. In winter, males are predominantly white with brown-black markings and exhibit remarkably elongated tail feathers, which are their namesake. 

Females display a browner plumage. When flying, their dark wings contrast sharply with their white bellies.

Differences Between Male And Female Long-Tailed Ducks

Females are generally browner than males, who in winter boast a strikingly white appearance with distinct black markings.

What Do Long-Tailed Ducks Eat?

These ducks primarily feed on cockles, clams, mussels, crabs, and small fish, showcasing their adept diving skills.

Where Do Long-Tailed Ducks Live? (Including Migration Info)

Long-Tailed Ducks are winter visitors and passage migrants to the UK, commonly spotted from Northumberland to northern Scotland. They breed in the Arctic tundra and migrate south to coastal waters during winter.

Bird Calls & Songs (The Unique Voices of Long-Tailed Ducks)

Males are known for their melodic yodelling call “ow, ow, owal-ow,” especially during the breeding season.

Fun Long-Tailed Duck Facts (Kid Friendly)

  • They can dive up to 60 metres deep, making them exceptional among ducks.
  • Long-Tailed Ducks undergo a complex moulting process, changing plumage three times a year.
  • These ducks have one of the smallest body weights among sea ducks.
  • They often gather in large flocks in winter, sometimes numbering in the thousands.
  • Known for their agility, they use partially folded wings to dive underwater.

Long-Tailed Duck Images

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Male
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Female
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Hatchling
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Nestling
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Chick
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Fledgling
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Juvenile

Facts About The Long-Tailed Duck

Diet: Mussels, cockles, clams, crabs and small fish.
Bird Family: Ducks, geese and swans
Length: 58-60 cm (including 13 cm of tail)
Wingspan: 73-79 cm
Weight: 520-950 g
Scientific Name: Clangula hyemalis

The Long-Tailed Duck Can Be Seen In The UK During The Following Months

  • January
  • February
  • March
  • April
  • October
  • November
  • December