northern pintail in exhibit

Northern Pintail

Scientific Name
Anas acuta
Northern Hemisphere
Wetlands, lakes, and rivers
Estimated Wild Population
Northern pintail in exhibit Endangered Status Graph - Least Concern Endangered Status Graph - Least Concern

More Information

Northern pintails were named after their long, pointed tail feathers, which can reach up to four inches in length. They are sexually dimorphic, meaning males and females differ in appearance. Males have a dark brown head and a white breast that darkens to gray and black along their back and wings. Females have a more uniform speckled-brown appearance. They feed on plants, aquatic insects, and crustaceans below the water’s surface.

Did You Know?

Northern pintails migrate seasonally from northern Canada and Eurasia to Central America, northern Africa, and southern mainland Asia.

Mating season begins in early May, and females lay seven to nine eggs.

Females feign injury to divert predators from their young.

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