Family Ducks, Geese, Swans (Anatidae)

Least Concern

Yellow-billed Teal (Anas flavirostris)


French: Sarcelle tachetée German: Südandenente Spanish: Cerceta barcina
Other common names: Speckled Teal (when lumped with A. andium)

Anas flavirostris


, 1816,

Buenos Aires, Argentina


Sometimes placed in genus Nettion. Usually united with A. andium in one species, but separation accepted here (see that species). Form oxyptera differs from nominate flavirostris in its lightly vs heavily mottled breast, mantle and back and greyish-cream vs dingy grey-brown underparts (2), and its slightly larger size apparently best expressed by longer wing (1 or 2). Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • A. f. oxyptera Meyen, 1834 – Sharp-winged Teal – Andes from C Peru (Cajamarca) S to NW Argentina (Catamarca).
  • A. f. flavirostris Vieillot, 1816 – Speckled Teal – N Argentina, Uruguay and SE Brazil S to Tierra del Fuego; Falkland Is, South Georgia.
  • Descriptive notes

    35–45 cm; 388–830 g. Head sometimes paler than in bird depicted. Both races resemble A. georgica, but always smaller, shorter-necked and darker-headed.... read more


    Male gives loud, single-syllabled “krick” in display, alarm and when separated when female, as well... read more


    Variety of freshwater lakes, rivers and marshes, generally at high altitude in mountainous country... read more

    Food and feeding

    Small aquatic invertebrates (insects, crustaceans, amphipods) and seeds, fruits and vegetative parts of aquatic plants (seaweed, algae). In... read more


    Season variable according to locality; season generally Oct–Mar in race oxyptera (with perhaps additional clutches in Jun... read more


    Southernmost breeding birds winter in more temperate regions, as far N as Uruguay, Paraguay and SE... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Generally common, even locally abundant, with overall population of nominate race in mainland South America estimated at > 1,000,... read more

    Recommended citation

    Carboneras, C. & Kirwan, G.M. (2019). Yellow-billed Teal (Anas flavirostris). 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 14 December 2019).