African Black Ducks

African Black Ducks Anas sparsa)

The African Black Ducks (Anas sparsa) is also known as the African black duck, black duck, black river duck, West African black duck, South African black duck, or the Ethiopian black duck.

Distribution / Range

The African Black Ducks are found in central and southern Africa, where they are usually seen in pairs or small flocks.

African Black Ducks on the Water
African Black Ducks on the Water


The plumage of this shy, yet territorial duck is mostly black duck with white marks on its back. They have yellow-orange feet.

This is a medium-sized duck – with the male being a little larger than the female.

Breeding / Range:

This duck breeds throughout the year in different areas.

During the daytime, it usually stays in rivers and streams. At night, it favors large open waters. It also likes to hide its nests near running water – but always above flood level and on the ground.

Its cup-shaped nest is made of driftwood and matted grass.

The average nest consists of 4 to 8 eggs, which are incubated by the hen for about 30 days. The young leave the nest when they are about 86 days only. The father does not participate in raising the chicks.

African Black Ducks on the Snow
African Black Duck on the Snow

Diet / Feeding:

This duck typically feeds off of larvae and pupae usually found under rocks, aquatic animals, plant material, seeds, small fish, snails and crabs.


Gordon Ramel

Gordon is an ecologist with two degrees from Exeter University. He's also a teacher, a poet and the owner of 1,152 books. Oh - and he wrote this website.

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