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Falcated Duck at Slimbridge Wildfowl and Wetlands Centre, Gloucestershire, England
Ducks at Narrabeen Lake, Sydney, Australia
Swans, possibly feeding, on Lake S√łerne in Copenhagen

Waterfowl are certain wildfowl of the order Anseriformes, especially members of the family Anatidae, which includes ducks, geese, and swans.

They are strong swimmers with medium to large bodies. They have historically been an important food source, and continue to be hunted as game, or raised as poultry for meat and eggs. The domestic duck is sometimes kept as a pet.

Some definitions of the term 'waterfowl' include the saltwater shorebirds or waders, gulls, pelicans, and herons, as well as seabirds such as the albatross, but 'fowl' especially refers to birds used by humans for game, according to the Concise Oxford Dictionary.

See also


  • Madge and Burn, Wildfowl ISBN 0-7470-2201-1
  • Taylor and van Perlo, Rails SBN 90-74345-20-4

External links

  • - U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Flyway Councils, waterfowl hunting management in North America
  • Editorial cartoons by conservationist Jay Norwood "Ding" Darling.

Simple English

Waterfowl are any type of bird that spends a lot of its life in or near water. Examples of waterfowl are ducks, geese, swans, coots, grebes, and moorhen.

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