Birda Logo
Species Guide
A photo of a Southern Pochard (Netta erythrophthalma), male
Southern Pochard, Male

Southern Pochard

Netta erythrophthalma

The Southern Pochard, Netta erythrophthalma, is a medium-sized, robust duck with a distinctive appearance. Males typically exhibit a dark, ruddy brown plumage with a blackish tail and a striking red eye, while females are generally more subdued in coloration, with a mottled brown appearance and a less vibrant eye color.

Identification Tips

To identify the Southern Pochard, look for the male's deep chestnut-brown body and the female's mottled brown plumage. Both sexes have a unique red eye that stands out against their darker head. They possess a relatively large head and a stout neck, with a grey bill that is broad and hooked at the tip.


The Southern Pochard favors shallow freshwater environments rich in submerged vegetation. In South America, they can be found from lowlands to altitudes as high as 3,700 meters. In Africa, they inhabit water bodies ranging from the Cape to the Ethiopian highlands, with or without emergent vegetation.


This species has a fragmented range across two continents. In South America, it is found in Colombia, Venezuela, Brazil, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Argentina, and Chile. The African counterpart is distributed from the Cape to the Ethiopian highlands.


Southern Pochards are sociable and gregarious, often seen in large flocks that can number up to 5,000 individuals. They are suspected to have been strong migrants in the past, but the construction of numerous farm dams has allowed for a more sedentary lifestyle, particularly in Africa.


Solitary nesters by nature, Southern Pochards build their nests out of leaves and stems on riverbanks, concealed by surrounding vegetation. The female lays a clutch of six to fifteen eggs and incubates them for 20 to 28 days. Upon hatching, the ducklings are immediately led to water by their mother.

Diet and Feeding

The diet of the Southern Pochard is predominantly aquatic plants obtained through diving. Adults also consume larvae, pupae, various aquatic animals, and additional plant material.

Conservation status

Since the 1970s, the population of Southern Pochards has been in decline. As of 2016, estimates suggested around 25,000 individuals in South America, though this figure may be an overestimate due to insufficient data. The species is currently classified as Least Concern by the IUCN.

Similar Species

The Southern Pochard may be confused with other diving ducks, but its red eye and the male's distinctive plumage set it apart. Observers should also note the species' habitat preferences and social behavior for accurate identification.

App logo
Birda is a birdwatching app and community aimed at curious people who want to deepen their connection with nature.

Southern Pochards on Birda


More Ducks, Geese, Swans

A photo of a Mandarin Duck (Aix galericulata) , male

Mandarin Duck

Aix galericulata
Birda Logo

Your birdwatching journey like never before

Connect with nature in minutes
Take a walk, look out of the window and log the birds that you see. Feel good about those little connections to nature.
Discover the joy of birding
Find new birding spots, see more birds, share and celebrate with a like-minded community of nature lovers.
Play your part in saving nature
Logging your birding sightings and sessions turns into positive action for our planet. Every sighting counts.

Birda Blog

What Our Birders Say
Fantastic App
This is a really lovely app, for everyone interested in birds - from newbies to old hands. There is a very friendly feel to the community and you will genuinely learn a lot as you record your sightings and photos. There are lots of badges and competitions to keep you engaged, and a host of really useful features.
Safira V
Birding and wellbeing app
Birda is an excellent platform to share your love of Birding and is a great tool of encouragement for a Birding Beginner like me. Birda has a very kind and supportive community of Birding enthusiasts. For me BIRDA is not only a BIRDING but also a WELLBEING App.
Erna M
I really like Birda
I really like Birda. I also use other birding apps and have Birda with E-bird going at the same time.
Great bird recording
For a while I’ve been trying to find an app to easily record bird lists and day out and struggled to find one that I like. Birda is great for this, straightforward and a great community!
Simply fantastic
I love this app, it puts so much fun into recording the birds I’ve seen and heard while I’m out and about. The interface is user-friendly and suitable for all ages. It’s great to collect badges and to review my β€œlists”.
We've been waiting for an App like this
Excellent! We've been waiting for an app like this! Thank you! It would be nice if you could assign additional birds to sessions later!
Patricia L
Very encouraging birding app
Easy to use, fun to see progress and encouraging to receive feedback from other users.
Alex J
Friendly and helps to identify birds
Great birding app, good for logging your sightings, also has nice species guide. I'm enjoying the social aspect more than I expected, everyone seems friendly and helps to identify unknown birds. Good mix of newbies and experienced users.
Nick S
Work together with community
Been loving using this app to log my bird sightings and work together with community members to identify different birds. I've already learned a lot since I started about a month ago!
The best bird logging app
Birda is honestly the best bird logging app I have seen. I love all the features it has from being able to do a session and log all the birds you see in one sitting, to being able to connect with other birders from all over the globe!
As featured in
Birda Logo
AboutPressAmbassadorsAffiliatesInfluencersCareersPrivacyTerms & Conditions
An app for birdwatchers
Connect with us
Copyright Β© 2024 Chirp Birding. All rights reserved.