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Flightless Birds

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Flightless Birds

Postby bearhug » Thu Mar 23, 2006 8:44 pm

In my lecture today we were talking about birds.
A student mentioned that he was from India and over there no ducks (domesticated and wild) actually fly. He thought that they were flightless birds until he came to the U.S. Can anyone explain why this may occur in India? Thanks
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Postby MrMistery » Thu Mar 23, 2006 8:51 pm

Hmmm... Maybe in India they inerpret duck as some other animal... it is true that domesticated ducs do not fly. What you need to ask is "Are ducs native to India?" Or are the wild ducks there only domesticated ducks that excaped from captivity? Unfortunately i do not know the answer. Other than that, from what i know, the duck we all know, order Anseriformes, can fly.
If the ducs are native, then maybe there some things that made it quit flying there... Some pesky falconiformes perhaps?
I think the only way to know the answer for sure is to ask an indian zoology professor or go there and study the problem yourself...
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Postby alextemplet » Thu Mar 23, 2006 10:26 pm

Where I live, domesticated ducks fly. I don't think many people bother to clip their flight feathers around here, so they can still fly.
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Postby bearhug » Fri Mar 24, 2006 12:20 am

Yeah I thought it was pretty weird that this student mentioned this and even my professor had a confused look on her face. I don't see why domesticated ducks could not fly, other than having their wings clipped. The only explanation I could think of is that where this student is from maybe the ducks are being fed and have no reason to go anywhere.
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Postby alextemplet » Fri Mar 24, 2006 12:42 am

That's how it is where I live, people feed them so they tend to stick around. But they still like to make little joy-flights every once and a while.
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Postby kiekyon » Fri Mar 24, 2006 7:44 am

i have always thought that ducks can't fly
they can keep themselves in the air for a few seconds
but actually flying??
but then, i have never seen a wild duck too
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Postby David George » Fri Mar 24, 2006 12:12 pm

Who said that there was no ducks that can fly in India there are 7 resident species of ducks and also 27 winter visitors.They are mainly found in northern,western India and also in the state of west bengal.
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Postby bearhug » Fri Mar 24, 2006 3:47 pm

This is coming from a fellow student in a BIO class who is originally from India. Once again it did seem odd to me.
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Postby David George » Sat Mar 25, 2006 6:20 am

Ducks can fly in India.India is well connected to asia and the wild life is similar to asia.You might not see flightless ducks any where until it experiences isolation and cannilization or it wings are cut.May be the person is from southern India where I live.It is odd to find a wild duck in South India.I don't think there are migrants[ducks] comming to south India.Darter birds in the Galapagos Islands have vestigeal wings[I don't think it has any uses] but the same darter bird in a mainland has wings this is mainly due to isolation.
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