Illinois Natural History Survey - University of Illinois

Blue-winged teal
Anas discors

 

Taxonomy
Occurence in Illinois
Status
Habitat associations
Guilds
Food-habits
Environmental associations
Life history
Management practices
References


TAXONOMY

 

  • Phylum: Chordata
  • Class: Aves
  • Order: Anseriformes
  • Family: Anatidae
  • Genus: Anas
  • Species: Anas discors
  • Authority: Linnaeus

Comments on taxonomy:
Other names: august teal, blue-wing, summer teal, white-faced teal, teal *02,03,05*.

 


OCCURENCE IN ILLINOIS

Common migrant; fairly common summer resident in north; uncommon summer resident in central; occasional summer resident in south; rare winter resident *01*.

 


STATUS

Items in bold indicate applicable categories
Forest Service Categories: S = recommended for regional sensitive status, F = forest listed species, M = management indicator species

Federal Status:

Endangered Threatened Proposed for listing
Candidate for proposal Recovery plan approved Recovery plan received (USFWS)
Recovery plan in preparation Under notice of review Delisted
Migratory EPA indicator Forest Serv.- Shawnee species

State Status:

Endangered Threatened Proposed

Other:

Game Furbearer Nongame protected
Sportfish Commercial Pest None of the above

Comments on status:
Blue-winged teal is protected by the Illinois wildlife code of 1971 *29*, and the Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918 *28*.

 


HABITAT ASSOCIATIONS

Items in bold indicate applicable categories

General habitat:

Unknown Terrestrial Aquatic Riparian

USFS timber inventory forest size class:

Unknown Unstocked Seedling Sapling
Seedling/sapling Pole Mature Over mature

Land use and land cover:

Unknown   Urban Residential
Commercial
Industrial
Transportation, communication
Complex industrial/commercial
Mixed
Other
Agricultural Crop, pasture
Orchards, groves, nurseries
Feedlot
Other
Rangeland Herbaceous
Shrub and brush
Mixed
Forestland Deciduous
Evergreen
Mixed
Water Stream
Lake
Reservoir
Bay
Wetland Forest
Non-forest
Barren Salt flat
Beach
Sand
Rock
Mine
Transit
Mix

 


Forest cover types: No records.

Associated tree species: No records.

 

National wetland inventory classifications:

SystemSubsystemClassSubclassWater regime modifiersWater chemistry
Lacustrine Littoral Emergent vegetation Persistent
Nonpersistent
Unknown/unspecified Unknown/unspecified
Palustrine   Emergent vegetation Persistent
Nonpersistent
Unknown/unspecified Unknown/unspecified
Palustrine   Forest Deciduous
Evergreen
Unknown/unspecified Unknown/unspecified
Riverine   Emergent vegetation Persistent
Nonpersistent
Unknown/unspecified Unknown/unspecified

Comments on species-habitat associations:
Breeding habitat - marshes, sloughs, ponds, creeks, overflow areas. Prefer marshes, potholes in tall grass prairie grasslands or moist meadows. Also nest in hayfields and alfalfa fields *01,02,03, 05*. Small populations nest in northern forests *03,08*. Migrant habitat may include any shallower water area *06*. Feeds in shallows of ponds, marshes, etc. - thus rarely seen on open deep water *02,04,06*.

High value habitats

HabitatStructural stageSeason
Cropland and pasture
Streams and canals
Lakes and ponds
Reservoirs
Bays and estuaries
Forested wetland
Nonforested wetland
Wetland
River
Not applicable (HVAL-HAB cover) All
Sedge meadow Not applicable (HVAL-HAB cover) Spring/summer
Cropland Special habitat All
Prairie Special habitat Spring/summer

Species-habitat interrelations: Summer breeding habitat includes a variety of aquatic habitats, such as marshes, small ponds, sloughs, overflow areas, sluggish creeks and mudflats. Preferred nesting habitat is in marshes of native prairie grasslands, the "pothole" country. Tall grasses of prairies and moist meadows provide optimal nesting cover *01,02,03,26*. Bluegrass may be preferred nesting cover *03,08,21*. High water levels are important, causing flooding of small temporary wetlands and of outer sedge zone of larger wetlands, creating territories not available at lower water levels *10,12*. Emergent zone, bulrushes, cattails, bur-reed, etc., provide important rearing cover for ducklings and cover for adults while molting *03,05*. Blue-wing teals also nest in alfalfa and hay fields *03,05,21* and in grazed fields *09,21*. Low numbers nest in wetlands of boreal and deciduous forests *03,08*. Because blue-wings feed in shallows they are rarely seen on open deep water *02,04,06*. Migrant habitat may include any shallower water areas *06*.

 


GUILDS

Feed-guilding:

HabitatStructural stageSeasonFeed-guilds
Cropland and pasture Not applicable (HVAL-HAB cover) All  
Marsh Not applicable (HVAL-HAB cover) All  
Lakes and Ponds Not applicable (HVAL-HAB cover) All  
Streams Not applicable (HVAL-HAB cover) All  
River Not applicable (HVAL-HAB cover) All  

Comments on feed-guilding:
Blue-wing teal rarely tip up to feed, but skim surface of water or reach just below surface in shallows of marshes, ponds, lakes, streams, etc. much of food is seeds and vegetation of aquatic plants. Animal foods are important in the breeding season *02,04,06,10*.

Breed-guilding:

HabitatStructural stageSeasonBreed-Guilds
Cropland and pasture Not applicable (HVAL-HAB cover) Spring/summer  
Sedge Meadow Not applicable (HVAL-HAB cover) Spring/summer  
Prairie Not applicable (HVAL-HAB cover) Spring/summer  
Marsh Not applicable (HVAL-HAB cover) Spring/summer  

Comments on breed-guilding:
Blue-wing teal breed in a variety of aquatic habitats; preferring marshes and potholes of tallgrass prairies and wet meadows *02,05,06*. Nest is located on ground, concealed in tall grasses and usually not far from water *02,04*. Ducklings are raised on small ponds, semipermanent potholes and other water areas that provide food and cover *03,04,05*.

 


FOOD-HABITS

Trophic level is OMNIVORE

Food itemLife stage/plant part
Algae Unknown
Salicaceae (willow, poplar) Unknown
Myricaceae (wax myrtle) Unknown
Ulmaceae (elm) Unknown
Hammamelidaceae (witch hazel) Unknown
Rosaceae (rose, cherry, plum, apple) Unknown
Fabaceae (pulses, tea) Unknown
Anacardiaceae (cashew) Unknown
Ericaceae (heath, blueberry, wintergreen) Unknown
Polygonaceae (buckwheat, rhubarb) Fruit/seeds, Unknown
Chenopodiaceae (glasswort, saltwort) Unknown
Amaranthaceae (amaranth) Unknown
Caryophyllaceae (chickweed) Unknown
Ranunculaceae (buttercup, marigold) Unknown
Nymphaceae (water lily, lotus) Unknown
Euphorbiaceae (castor, poinsettia) Unknown
Vitaceae (grape, creeper) Unknown
Malvaceae (mallow) Unknown
Lythraceae (loosestrife, purslane) Unknown
Onagraceae (fireweed) Unknown
Haloragaceae (water milfoil) Unknown
Umbelliferae (carrot) Unknown
Convolulaceae (morning glory) Unknown
Boraginaceae (bluebells, heliotrope) Unknown
Verbenaceae (vervain) Unknown
Caprifoliaceae (honeysuckle, elderberry) Unknown
Rubiaceae (buttonbush, bedstraw, quinine) Fruit/seeds
Plantaginaceae (plantain) Unknown
Hydrocharitaceae (tape grass, water weed) Unknown
Poaceae (grass) Unknown
Poaceae (grass): corn Unknown
Poaceae (grass): rice Unknown
Poaceae (grass): wheat Unknown
Poaceae (grass): rye Unknown
Poaceae (grass): crab grass Unknown
Poaceae (grass): foxtail grass Unknown
Sparaginaceae (bur-reed) Unknown
Zosteraceae (pondweed) Unknown
Najadaceae (naiad) Unknown
Alismataceae (arrowhead) Unknown
Cyperaceae (bulrush, sedge) Unknown
Lemnaceae (duckweed) Unknown
Annelida (segmented worms)  
Annelida: Hirudinea (leeches)  
Mollusca  
Mollusca: Gastropoda (snails)  
Mollusca: Bivalvia (bivalves)  
Arachnida (spiders, ticks, scorpions, daddy longlegs)  
Crustaceans  
Ostracods (eucypris)  
Malacostraca (isopods, amphipods, crayfish)  
Insecta  
Ephemeroptera (mayflies)  
Odonata (dragonflies, damselflies)  
Orthoptera (grasshoppers, crickets, cockroaches)  
Hemiptera  
Homoptera (cicadas, aphids)  
Neuroptera (dobsonflies)  
Coleoptera (beetles)  
Tricoptera (caddisflies)  
Lepidoptera (butterflies, moths)  
Diptera (flies, midges, mosquitoes)  
Hymenoptera (ants, wasps, bees)  
Osteichthyes (bony fishes)  
Salientia (frogs, toads)  
Juvenile:
Adult:

Comments on food habits: 
General:
Juvenile:
Adult:


ENVIRONMENTAL ASSOCIATIONS

General:

Limiting:

Egg

Feeding juvenile:

Resting juvenile:

Feeding adult:

Resting adult:

Breeding adult:

Comments on environmental associations:
General:
Feeding juvenile:
Resting juvenile:
Feeding adult:
Resting adult:
Breeding adult:


LIFE HISTORY

Origin:

Physical description:

Reproduction:

Behavior:

Limiting factors:

Population parameters:

 


MANAGEMENT PRACTICES

Beneficial:

Adverse:

Existing:

Comments on management practices:


REFERENCES

 


 

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