Eurasian Wigeon

Anas penelope

Common and widespread in the Old World, the Eurasian Wigeon is a sporadic visitor to North America. Regular in very small numbers along the Pacific and Atlantic coasts, single individuals have turned up in nearly all states and provinces.

Interesting Information

Although the Eurasian Wigeon has not yet been found breeding in North America, it is possible that some do. The Eurasian Wigeons seen each year in North America likely come from eastern Siberia and Iceland.


Adult Description

Medium-sized duck.

Male with dark reddish head and buffy crown.

Gray sides.

Black rear end bordered by white.

Large white patch in wings.

Length Range: 46-51 cm (18-20 in)

Weight: 816 g (28.8 oz)

Size: Large (16 - 32 in)

Color Primary: Brown, Gray, Rufous or Rust

Underparts: White

Upperparts: Gray with fine black barring.

Back Pattern: Barred or banded

Belly Pattern: Solid

Breast Pattern: Solid


Similar to adult female.


Photo taken from: The Sibley Field Guide by David Allen Sibley

© 2002 - 2007


Shallow freshwater wetlands, including ponds, marshes, and rivers.


Courtship displays include tail-wagging, head-turning, wing-flapping, and sudden jumps out of the water. Feeds on vegetation at and just below surface. Submerges head and tips tail up to reach plants under surface.


Aquatic plants; some insects and mollusks during the breeding season.



Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
     Subphylum: Vertebrata
Class: Aves
Order: Anseriformes
Family: Anatidae
    Subfamily: Anserinae
Genus: Anas
Species: Anas penelope

Similar Species

American Wigeon

Bird Sound

High, scratchy, whistling "whe-o." Female quacks.

Eggs look like this

Photo taken from: ARCTOS Collaborative Collection Management Solution