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The birds

Czernica

Czernica

It may seem strange, that the plumage of ducks is always dry, even though they remain in the water. The reason for this is simple: ducks take great care of their plumage as a protective layer. They take a bath every day, which may seem absurd in aquatic species. They soak their plumage thoroughly while bathing and playing. Then they come out of the water and squeeze the water out of the feathers with their beaks. When the feathers are completely dry, they cover them with fat squeezed out of the rump gland. Oiled feathers become waterproof, and the air between them provides thermal insulation. In addition, diving ducks protect their wings with a kind of down bag that keeps the flight feathers dry, therefore they can take off at any time. With the body protected in this way, ducks can stay under water for a long time. Only their paws are not secured with a protective layer. They are protected against cooling by a dense network of capillaries, which allows the flow of large amounts of blood.

Czernica native to the north and northeast of Europe and Asia. About a hundred years ago, its populations settled in the western parts of Northern Europe. At the beginning of our century, tufted duck penetrated into Central Europe, and now it is moving south. In some countries the number of blueberries is as great as the crosses. They are often seen nesting in large cities, like London and Hamburg. Their wintering grounds are located south of the nesting grounds and on the shores of the Mediterranean Sea.

Czernica is a diving duck, with black and white plumage and a short tail, which appears to be laying in the water while swimming. The mating plumage is black with blinding white edges. The male's head is decorated with a small tip that is an extension of the occipital feathers (1). In flight, the tufted duck can be recognized by the clearly white stripe on the rear edge of the wings (2). The female is dark brown, with brown sides and a white belly (3). Czernice nest in May and June. 70% nests are located directly on aquatic plants (reeds, rush), 20% on islets, the rest on the edges. The nests are lined with dry grass and a layer of brown fluff. Po 25 days of incubation they hatch 8 do 12 ducklings covered with dark brown or black down (4). Game bird.