Radjah Shelduck Duck

The Radjah Shelduck Duck (Tadorna radjah), is a species of shelduck found mostly in New Guinea and Australia, and also on some of the Moluccas. It is known alternatively as the raja shelduck, black-backed shelduck, or in Australia as the Burdekin duck.

Radjah Shelduck Duck

Radjah Shelduck Duck

Appearance: – The Radjah Shelduck has a white plumage with dark wingtips, secondary feathers are metallic green with white tips, a dark brown-black back, dark collar of feathers around the breast, a pink beak, white eyes with pink eye-ring, and pink legs and feet. Both sexes are alike.

Size: – Typical Adult is 20-24 inches.

Food: – Molluscs, insects, algae, sedges, roots, and seeds.

Habitat: – Mangrove forests, freshwater swamps and lagoons of New Guinea and northern Australia.

Breeding Season: – Egg-laying is usually done by May or June.

Eggs: – 6 to 12 (creamy white color).

Notes: – The Radjah Shelduck Duck is sometimes called the Raja Shelduck and is also known as the Burdekin Duck in Australia. They nest in the hollows of trees. This bird is protected in Australia.

The different types of wild ducks can be grouped into puddle, aka “dabbling” and diving ducks. The dabblers mostly feed in smaller bodies of shallow water or along shorelines, where they are able to tip their bodies forward to reach their food on the bottom. There are divers who feed in deeper water where they dive and pursue their quarry. Some of these birds, the Harlequin Duck for example, actually dives to the bottom of fast-flowing waters and feeds on life forms attached to rocks.


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