Mareca strepera

RSPB Conservation Status – Amber

Last seen – 11-4-22

The Gadwall is a medium-sized dabbling duck that is found across the Northern Hemisphere, including the UK.

Gadwalls are migratory birds that breed in northern Europe and Asia and winter in the UK and other parts of Europe.

It has a grey-brown plumage with a distinctive black rear end, a white belly, and a patch of iridescent green feathers on its wings.

The male Gadwall has a distinctive black bill, while the female has a mottled brown bill.


Population – 1500 breeding pairs

Length – 46 – 56 cm

Wingspan – 84 – 95 cm

Weight – 650 – 900 g


Gadwalls breed in northern Europe and Asia, typically in wetlands or grassy areas near water.

They build a nest from grass and other vegetation, usually near water, and lay between 8-10 eggs.

Both parents incubate the eggs for around 3-4 weeks, and the chicks fledge after around 7-8 weeks.


Gadwalls can be found in a range of freshwater habitats, including lakes, ponds, and marshes.

They prefer habitats with dense vegetation and shallow water, where they can find both food and cover.

Gadwalls are often found in mixed flocks with other dabbling ducks, such as Teals and Mallards.



Gadwalls are omnivorous birds that feed on a variety of food sources, including aquatic plants, seeds, insects, and small invertebrates.

They often feed by dabbling in shallow water, where they can find food on the bottom of the lake or pond.

If you have seen a Gadwall, please let us know via our survey page.