Nature Journal
with Photos

Northern Shoveler Identification Tips
(Credit: U. S. Geological Survey)
General Information
- Large dabbling duck
- Large spatulate bill
- Juvenile similar to adult female

Adult male alternate
- Alternate plumage worn from fall through early
- Black bill
- Eyes yellow
- Green head
- White lower neck, breast, and tail
- Rusty underbody with white band on hind flanks
- Dark back, with elongated white scapulars
- Pale blue upper secondary coverts
- Green speculum with white leading and trailing edges

Adult male basic
- Similar to adult female

Adult female
- Eyes brown
- Orange bill with dusky patches
- Mottled brown and buff head, neck and back
- Dusky blue upper secondary coverts
- Dull green speculum with white fore border

Similar species
Large, spatulate bill makes the Northern Shoveler immediately recognizable in all plumages.
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