Family Ducks, Geese, Swans (Anatidae)

Critically Endangered

Madagascar Pochard (Aythya innotata)


French: Fuligule de Madagascar German: Madagaskarmoorente Spanish: Porrón malgache

Nyroca innotata


, 1894,

Betsileo, Madagascar


Generally considered to be closest to A. australis, A. baeri and A. nyroca. Monotypic.


Restricted to Banemavka area of NW Madagascar, where discovered in 2006#R; last record from its historical area around L Alaotra (300 km to S) in 1991, possibly originating from Banemavka population#R; species may have been more widespread formerly on plateau of C Madagascar.

Descriptive notes

45–56 cm; one male 685 g. Only Aythya in Malagasy region. White on abdomen diffuse towards flanks; male in breeding plumage is dark brown with white underparts... read more


Likened to A. americana, but no specific details published.


Originally freshwater lakes, pools and swamps with areas of open water and many islets of... read more

Food and feeding

Little known; examination of faecal samples and stable isotope analysis suggest adults have a diet consisting almost entirely of insects,... read more


Few data available. Season Jul–Jan, with observations of young in Dec. In single pairs; nest is structure made of plant matter, lined... read more


Presumably sedentary within restricted range, as no records from other areas; some local movements... read more

Status and conservation

CRITICALLY ENDANGERED. Previously considered Endangered. On the brink of extinction, with BirdLife International estimating population at just 20–49 mature... read more

Recommended citation

Carboneras, C. & Kirwan, G.M. (2019). Madagascar Pochard (Aythya innotata). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 15 December 2019).