Cinnamon Teal – Profile | Traits | Facts | Call | Diet | Breeding

Cinnamon teal

The cinnamon teal, scientific name Spatula cyanoptera is a species of duck present in western North and South America. It is a small dabbling duck, with vivid reddish plumage on the male and duller brown plumage on the feminine. It lives in marshes and ponds and feeds totally on crops.

Cinnamon teal Overview

While many of our marsh geese are discovered from coast to coast, the Cinnamon Teal is strictly western. Unique amongst our northern dabbling geese, this teal additionally has nesting populations in South America.

A detailed relative of Blue-winged Teal (and generally hybridizing with it), the Cinnamon Teal has a barely bigger bill, higher developed for straining meals gadgets out of the water.

In some methods, this species appears intermediate between Blue-winged Teal and Northern Shoveler.

Generally, Cinnamon Teal feed within the shallow waters of marshes and lakes. They additionally dive for meals or get it from the shoreline. Cinnamon Teal dive for vascular rooted crops, or they eat arthropods from the bottom-aquatic bed.

From terrestrial surfaces, Cinnamon Teal eat flowers and fruits of grass-like vegetation. On the floor of the water, they feed on floating vascular crops. From the underside and water column, they feed on quite a few species, together with numerous invertebrates and arthropods.

Foods ate embrace seeds, submerged crops, emergent crops, bugs, and mollusks.

Cinnamon teal Habitat

Marshes, contemporary ponds. Favors contemporary or alkaline shallow lakes, intensive marshes. Generally not in coastal salt marshes. In migration, might pause on any type of small pond or reservoir. South American races might use a greater variety of habitats.

There are 5 subspecies of the Cinnamon Teal, all native to the New World. The sole subspecies native to North America is the Northern Cinnamon Teal (Anas cyanoptera septentrionalium).

The Northern Cinnamon Teal breeds in western North America from British Columbia south to California and winters within the south-western States and Mexico.

The rest of the subspecies is native to South America. The Argentine Cinnamon Teal (Anas cyanoptera cyanoptera) breeds from southern Peru south into Argentina and the Falkland Islands.

The largest subspecies, the Andean Cinnamon Teal (Anas cyanoptera orinomus), is positioned within the high elevation areas of Peru, Bolivia, and Chile.

The smallest subspecies is the Tropical Cinnamon Teal (Anas cyanoptera tropica) from the lowlands of Columbia. The rarest subspecies, the Borrero’s Cinnamon Teal (Anas cyanoptera borreroi) is positioned solely within the highlands of Columbia.

Cinnamon teal Distribution

Their breeding habitat is marshes and ponds within the western United States and excessive southwestern Canada, and are uncommon visitors to the east coast of the United States.

Cinnamon teal typically selects new mates every year. They are migratory and most winter in northern South America and the Caribbean, typically not migrating so far as the blue-winged teal.

Some winter in California and southwestern Arizona. Two subspecies of cinnamon teal reside throughout the Andes of South America.

The smaller-sized S. c. cyanoptera is widespread inside low elevations (<1000m) because of the coast of Peru and southern Argentina, whereas the bigger size subspecies S. c. orinomus occupies elevations of 3500-4600 meters within the central Andes.

cinnamon teal, scientific name Spatula cyanoptera

Cinnamon teal Description

The adult male has a cinnamon-red head and body with a brown back, red-eye, and a darkish bill.

The adult feminine has a mottled brown body, a pale brown head, brown eyes, and a gray bill and could be very related in look to a feminine blue-winged teal; nonetheless, its overall color is richer, the lores, eye line, and eye-ring are much less distinct. Its bill is longer and more spatulate.

Male juvenile resembles feminine cinnamon or blue-winged teal however their eyes are red. They are 16 in (41 cm) long, have a 22-inch (560 mm) wingspan, and weigh 14 oz (400 g). They have 2 adult molts per year and the 3rd molt of their first year.

The characteristics of the Cinnamon Teal differ relying on the age and sex of the bird. Although there are slight variations between completely different subspecies of A. cyanoptera, they have an inclination to share common traits nonetheless.

The color of the adult male’s head, chest, and underside is usually purple-chestnut, and the stomach is darkish brown. The lower back and rear of the bird are greenish-brown, whereas the wing coverts are blue.

There are variations in shoulder feather color between birds, starting from yellow with a center stripe, to green with a center stripe.

The juvenile is comparable in look to the adult feminine, having a green speculum with a white vanguard, and pale blue higher secondary coverts.

The adult male’s primary markings are just like these, however, he has red eyes and a brighter forewing. From the autumn to the spring, the adult male has an alternate plumage.

The head, neck, stomach, and flanks are vivid red, whereas the back is darkish brown. Additionally, the male has black under-tail coverts within the fall by springtime span.

Cinnamon teal Lifespan/Longevity

The survival charges aren’t well-known as a result of the truth that not many Cinnamon teals have been banded. The oldest Cinnamon Teal identified in 1982 was 12 years 11 months of age.

Although present survival charges aren’t effectively documented, an experiment from 1972 by Kozlik estimated that 29 % of juveniles survived one year, and of those 46 % survived to the second year.

Cinnamon teal Behavior

These birds feed by dabbling. They primarily eat crops; their diet might embrace mollusks and aquatic bugs.

Cinnamon Teal are often present in small flocks, comprising pairs of birds. During the spring migration, the flocks improve in size, containing as many as twenty birds.

Migration within the spring happens throughout March and April. Cinnamon Teal spends winters within the southwest U.S. and likewise in Mexico and South America.

cinnamon teal, scientific name Spatula cyanoptera

During breeding and migration, the birds are often noticed in pairs or in teams of as many as 20 geese.

Other species which they’re discovered close to embrace the Blue-winged Teal, Green-winged Teal, Northern Shoveler, and Gadwall in North America, and Red Shoveler and Speckled Teal in South America. They are typically the subordinate species throughout encounters.

Although the birds are principally aquatic animals, they’re mobile on land and are capable of stroll or run around loafing areas on land. They are very agile in flight.

The birds make sudden and sharp turns whereas flying low, they usually take off to fly straight from the water.

Cinnamon Teal preen each on land and in water. They are inclined to preen more throughout the center of the day than within the morning or the night.

Pairs are inclined to sleep or relaxation inside one meter of each other, and the males typically stay alert whereas the feminine sleeps. The sleeping sites are water or dry areas close to the water, and resting time tends to be noon more than morning or night.

Generally, from the spring arrival to the incubation period the day is spent sleeping and loafing, with time additionally spent preening, swimming, strolling, or flying.

Females eat more meals than males, and males spend more time alert and concerned in inter-and intraspecies interactions.

Until the third week of incubation, males make aggressive shows with a view to defend their mates and desired ready for sites. Only the males are territorial.

Dominance heirarchies are as follows: Paired birds dominate unpaired birds, and males dominate over females besides throughout brood-rearing.

cinnamon teal, scientific name Spatula cyanoptera

Feeding Behavior

Usually forages in shallow water, swimming ahead with head partly submerged, straining meals from the water. One feeding bird might comply with one other, making the most of meals stirred up by paddling actions of the first bird. Occasionally feeds on land close to water.


Mainly seeds. Plant materials in diet consist of seeds of smartweeds, sedges, grasses, pondweeds, others. Also eats bugs, snails, small crustaceans.

In one examination, migrants consumed largely seeds and different plant materials in fall, a higher proportion of animal matter (primarily bugs) in spring.


9-12, generally 4-16. Whitish to very pale buff. Incubation is by females solely, 21-25 days. Young: feminine leads younger to water after they hatch. Young discover their very own meals; able to flight 7 weeks after hatching.

If hazard threatens younger, an adult feminine might be placed on the broken-wing act as a distraction display. Unlike most duck species, the male might not abandon mate till close to the time the eggs hatch and generally is seen accompanying feminine and younger brood.


Female leads younger to water after they hatch. Young discover their very own meals; able to flight 7 weeks after hatching. If hazard threatens younger, an adult feminine might be placed on the broken-wing act as a distraction display.

Unlike most duck species, males might not abandon mate till close to the time the eggs hatch and generally are seen accompanying feminine and younger brood.

cinnamon teal, scientific name Spatula cyanoptera

Cinnamon teal Reproduction

Mating pair bonds are renewed every season, throughout the winter. Females entice the males by swimming in front of the specified mate.

The reproductive behavior of males consists of a number of behaviors meant to draw unpaired females, comparable to Preen-behind-wing, Preen-dorsally, Belly-preen, Preen-back-behind-wing, Repeated calls, Turning back of the head, and Head-dip.

If a number of males are competing for one feminine, Drake performs short flight shows. Actual copulation happens on the water floor.

The female and male each interact in head-bobbing directed towards each other. Next, the feminine will get right into a susceptible place and the male then will get behind the feminine and mounts whereas greedy the neck together with his bill.

After inside copulation, each male and female bathe and preen.

The Cinnamon Teal hen constructs a half-moon-shaped nest out of plant stems and useless grass. Young birds are lined in down once they hatch and depart the nest within 24 hours of hatching. Generally, that is to travel with the hen to a close-by water source.

The ducklings are capable of feed themselves from the first day that they hatch. However, they continue to be under the care of the hen till fledging, which happens after 7 weeks. As they get nearer to fledging they range farther from the nest and the hen.

During the eighth week of improvement, the eyes of the drake grow to be red. Sexual maturity is reached after one year when a Cinnamon Teal is ready to breed.


The Cinnamon Teal hens are very protective of their nests; when a predator is close by the feminine creates a disturbance to attract consideration away from the nest.

It is most common for nesting females to be killed by predators. The males defend the nest sites from predators however they have an inclination to circle the area somewhat than spending time straight defending the nest because the females do.


Several males might court docket one feminine, making ritualized mock feeding and preening actions. Short display flights might become pursuit flights, with males chasing females.

Nest site often near water among the many good cover of sedges, weeds, salt grass, typically effectively hid. Nest is a shallow melancholy with some useless grass and weeds added, lined with down. The female selects a nest site and builds the nest.

cinnamon teal, scientific name Spatula cyanoptera

Cinnamon teal Ecosystem

The Cinnamon Teal is the sufferer of brood parasitism by different geese (coots, mallards, redheads, and ruddy geese), and it is also a brood parasite of different geese itself.

Cinnamon teals disperse seeds whereas consuming them. Because they eat aquatic vegetation they assist to stop overgrowth which hinders the mobility of water animals.

Finally, their predation on mollusks and bugs helps to control these populations. Because Cinnamon Teal has many predators, they’re vital to the survival of many animals, together with Coyotes and Coots.

Cinnamon teal Conservation

The Cinnamon Teal is usually not under great strain from looking, because it migrates early within the fall and in consequence, it isn’t closely harvested within the U.S. and Canada.

Still, it is likely one of the least plentiful geese in North America. They obtain competitors from the Blue-winged Teal, which has a bigger population.

This might contribute to the limiting of the Cinnamon Teal’s growth of a breeding range in North America. However, the Cinnamon Teal appears to be higher suited to wetlands within the West and has the very best focus on this area.

More Interesting Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *