Anas 'oustaleti'   (Salvadori)


 
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Mariana Mallard
(Anas 'oustaleti')

 
syn. Anas platyrhynchus oustaleti (Salvadori)

 
dstribution:

Mariana Islands: Guam, Saipan, Tinian

 
local name:

Nganga' (Chamorro)
Nganga' palao (Chamorro)

 
size: 51 - 56 cm (length)

extinction date: 1981

 
This very interesting duck was once an inhabitant of the Mariana Islands.

It was probably an established natural hybrid swarm formed by hybrids between Mallards (Anas platyrhynchus (L.)) and Pacific Black Ducks (Anas superciliosa (Gmelin)). Some scientists however think the Mariana Mallard may have been a subspecies of the common Mallard.

The wetlands, that once were home for these birds, were destroyed for agricultural purposes, and the birds were hunted so massive that the populations soon broke down.

An captivity preeding program, started with the last three surviving birds (one female and two males), by far much too late in the year 1979, unfortunately failed because the birds didn't want to breed in captivity.

The last member of this unusual bird form died in the year 1981.

 
 
above:

Mariana Mallard (Anas 'oustaleti'); third bird from left


Depiction from: 'John C. Phillips: A Natural History of the Ducks. Boston; Houghton Mifflin Company; 1922-1926'

http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org

 
References:

- H. Douglas Pratt, Phillip L. Bruner, Delwyn G. Berrett: A Field Guide to the Birds of Hawaii and the Tropical Pacific. Princeton University Press 1987
- Steve Madge; Hilary Burn: Waterfowl: An identification guide to the Ducks, Geese and Swans of the World. Houghton Mifflin, Boston. 1988