Family Ducks, Geese, Swans (Anatidae)

Least Concern

Spotted Whistling-duck (Dendrocygna guttata)


French: Dendrocygne tacheté German: Tüpfelpfeifgans Spanish: Suirirí moteado
Other common names: Spotted Tree Duck

Dendrocygna guttata


, 1866,



Superficially resembles D. arborea, but has sometimes been thought to be closest to D. eytoni. Monotypic.


Mindanao (S Philippines) and Sulawesi E through Moluccas and Tanimbar Is (E Lesser Sundas) to New Guinea, Bismarck Archipelago and, recently, NE Australia (Cape York Peninsula)#R.

Descriptive notes

43–50 cm; male 590–650 g, female 610–860 g. Small white mark at base of lower mandible. Reminiscent of D. arborea though smaller and with blackish... read more


Most common vocalizations include a nasal, single-syllable “gack”, a simple whistled “whee’-ow” or... read more


Margins of freshwater swamps, lakes, pools, marshes, mangroves, creeks and rivers, surrounded by... read more

Food and feeding

Diet includes grass seeds and small snails. Food obtained by dabbling at water’s edge, filtering surface and diving. Mainly nocturnal... read more


Starts at beginning of wet season (Sept), but active nests also found in Dec, Mar and Apr in New Guinea, with downy young observed in... read more


Probably mainly sedentary, although unclear whether the species is resident on the Kai Is, and... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Not usually found in large concentrations. Appears well represented within range, especially in parts of Indonesia, probably... read more

Recommended citation

Carboneras, C. & Kirwan, G.M. (2019). Spotted Whistling-duck (Dendrocygna guttata). 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 11 December 2019).