Common Pochard – Accepted

1. 11–17 Feb 1989

ASY male

Silver Lakes SBE



ph., Patten (1993a), AB 43:230

and 17 Jan–23 Feb 1991





and 14 Jan–08 Feb 1992





and 26–29 Nov 1992





2-3. 26 Dec 1994

AHY malemale

Bolsa Chica ORA



Fig. 193, ph., Erickson & Hamilton (2001)


Common Pochard

COMMON POCHARD Aythya ferina (Linnaeus, 1758)

Accepted: 3 (100%)

Treated in Appendix H: no

Not accepted: 0

CBRC review: all records

Not submitted/reviewed: 0

Larger image and caption: click here.

Common PochardThis duck breeds in Eurasia, from Iceland eastward to central Russia and southern Siberia. The species winters in western Europe, northern and central Africa, the Middle East, and across southern Asia to Japan. Migrants occur rarely but regularly through the western Aleutian Islands and casually elsewhere in Alaska. The species has also been recorded in the northwestern Hawaiian Islands and on Guam.

An adult male Common Pochard at Silver Lakes, San Bernardino County, 11–17 February 1989—the first to be recorded in the coterminous United States—went on to be detected during three of the next four winters (Patten 1993a). Committee members had concerns about its natural occurrence, but noted that the Common Pochard is an abundant migratory species that is scarce in captivity. Also relevant was a 22 March 1981 record from Homer, in south-central Alaska (AB 35:853), which implied that the species had wintered previously in the New World (Patten 1993a). California’s only other record involves two adult males photographed together on 26 December 1994 at Bolsa Chica, Orange County (Figure 196). That all three Common Pochards identified in the state have been adult males suggests that females and immatures may be overlooked.

Haramis (1982) provided details on the appearance of Redhead × Canvasback hybrids, as did Oregon Birds 15:140–142 (1989 unattributed paper with photos). Madge (1991) and Patten (1993a) reviewed Common Pochard identification with reference to Redheads, Canvasbacks, and their hybrids.

A 10 March 2005 query of the International Species Information System yielded no records of captive Common Pochards at zoos or other participating institutions in North America.