Eurasian Wigeon

Conservation status

Least Concern

Population Trend


Alternate Names

Wigeon, European Wigeon

Native Habitat



Aquatic vegetation


Eurasian Wigeon

Mareca penelope

The Eurasian wigeon is one of three species of wigeons. It is common and widespread within its range. It is 20 in long with a 31 in wingspan, and a weight of 1 kg. The breeding male has grey flanks and back, with a black rear end, a dark green speculum and a brilliant white patch on upper wings, obvious in flight or at rest. It has a pink breast, white belly, and a chestnut head with a creamy crown. In non-breeding plumage, the drake looks more like the female. The female is light brown, with plumage much like a female American wigeon. It can be distinguished from most other ducks, apart from American wigeon, on shape. However, that species has a paler head and white axillaries on its underwing. The female can be a rufous morph with a redder head, and a gray morph with a more gray head.

Regional Names
  • Bengali:
    ইউরেশীয় সিঁথিহাঁস, লালশির
  • French:
    Canard siffleur
  • Gujarati:
    પિયાસણ, પિયાસયુ, ફારૌ
  • Hindi:
    छोटा लालसीर
  • Marathi:
    वैष्णव, तरंग

Mareca penelope

Quick Facts
  • The ducklings of this bird head for the waters soon after they have hatched.