THE MARBLED DUCKS.
THE peculiar Duck which is the sole representative of this group is an inhabitant of dry, arid countries, and may be regarded as a desert form of Duck. Its coloration recalls to mind the coloration of the Sand-Grouse.
The Marbled Duck has the upper plumage spotted. This character, together with the barred under tail-coverts, suffices to distinguish it from all other Indian Ducks. The sexes hardly differ in colour, and there can be little doubt that the drake does not have a postnuptial moult, the whole moult being accomplished in the autumn. The male is very slightly crested; in the female there is hardly a trace of a crest.
The speculum differs little in colour from the surrounding parts of the wing, which is weak in structure. The legs are feeble and the middle toe is hardly longer than the tarsus. The profile of the upper mandible is considerably concave; and the bill is of equal width throughout.