(Anas clypeata)




Facts about this animal

The (Northern) shoveler is a medium-sized dabbling duck, the male with a body-weight of about 1 kg, the female of about 750 g, characterized by a long, heavy spatulate bill.

The breeding plumage of the male is unmistakable: head and upper part of the neck are glossy bottle-green, there is a white ring around the lower neck breast, and the belly is chestnut, back and tail are black. Males in eclipse and females are buffy-brown.

The nest is usually well concealed and located in dense vegetation near water. 7 to 14 greenish-buff eggs are laid, which are incubated by the female alone for 23-28 days.

The shoveler's food includes seaweed, pondweeds and other aquatic vegetation; plankton molluscs, freshwater snails, aquatic insects, tadpoles and small crustaceans.

Did you know?
that shovelers have a bill with comb like teeth along the upper and lower mandibles, which aid in filter feeding.


Class AVES
Suborder ANSERES
Name (Scientific) Anas clypeata
Name (English) Shoveler
Name (French) Canard souchet
Name (German) Löffelente
Name (Spanish) Cuchara común
Local names Afrikaans: Europese slopeend
Czech: Lzizák pestrý
Dutch: Slobeend
Estonian: Luitsnokk-part
Finnish: Lapasorsa
Greek: Chouliarópapia
Hungarian: Kanalasréce
Italian: Mestolone
Plish: Plaskonos
Portuguese: Plato trombeteiro
Romansh: Anda da la palutta
Swedish: Skedand
CITES Status Appendix III (Danemark)
CMS Status Appendix II (as Anatidae spp.) Included in AEWA



Photo Copyright by
Alan Wilson



Range Breeds throughout Eurasia and western North America. Winters in southern part of breeding range, south to North and East Africa, Arabian Gulf, southern Asia, and Central America.
Habitat Freshwater wetlands including shallow lakes, dams and ponds, rivers, wet meadows, marshes etc., but also coastal waters and bays.
Wild population The global population is estimated to be 5,000,000 to6,400,000 individuals by Wetlands International (2002).
Zoo population 374 reported to ISIS (2006).

In the Zoo



How this animal should be transported

For air transport, Container Note 18 of the IATA Live Animals Regulations should be followed.


Find this animal on ZooLex


Photo Copyright by
Alan Wilson

Why do zoos keep this animal

The shoveler is not a threatened species. Zoos keep them for educational purposes and as an ambassador species for wetland conservation. Depending of the location of its location and of the size and quality of its waterfowl ponds, shovelers may chose a zoo for wintering or even breeding.