Kakadu National Park

Saturday 12 October 2019

The wandering whistling duck draws its name from its loud whistling call and the noise its wings make during flight.

You might hear it as it flies home to roost after sunset.

It is more aquatic than its close relative, the plumed whistling duck.

What it looks like

The wandering whistling duck is a large bird with rich red-brown plumage. It has a dark stripe on the crown of its head, nape and back of neck.

Where to see it

These ducks live around deep vegetated billabongs, swamps and flooded plains. They prefer deeper waters where aquatic plants and insects are plentiful.

From June to October, look for these birds on the Gungarre Walk and Mamukala Wetlands Walk, at Anbangbang Billabong and around waterways in the Yellow Water region.

Culture

Djirrbiyuk is an Aboriginal outstation in Kakadu National Park named after the nearby sacred site for the wandering whistle duck. The full name of this place is Djirrbiyuk Kakukdjabdjabdi, which means ‘whistle ducks are standing up everywhere’.

Other names

  • Scientific name: Dendrocygna arcuata