Swans, Geese & Ducks (Anatidae)
Species
Swans and geese are large aquatic birds which spend most of their lives in or near water. They are robust in build, have flattened beaks and fully webbed feet. They find much of their food on dry land but resort to water for safety when nesting or roosting. There is no sexual dimorphism amongst swans or geese.
 
Ducks are small to medium-sized water birds which spend most of their lives in or near water. Many species are highy gregarious. Sexual dimorphism is common among ducks, although less so in southern hemisphere species.
 
There are seven species of swan worldwide. Two species breed in Europe, and one more spends the winter. The Black Swan has been introduced into Britain. There are thirty-one species of geese worldwide. Ten species occur in Europe, of which seven breed, two are winter visitors and one has been introduced. There are about 106 species of duck worldwide. About 34 species occur in Europe, of which 25 breed here.
 
Species seen but not photographed:
  • Common Scoter: Oxon (April 2018)