The Tufted Duck has its name ‘tufted’ because it has a tuft of long feathers which hang down from the back of the duck’s head. It is a diving duck that can be found throughout England on large lakes, reservoirs, slow-flowing rivers, in flooded gravel pits and even on lakes in city parks, especially if they have little islands where the Tufted Duck can nest on.
The Tufted Duck is a medium-sized duck with a short neck and a large round head. It has a long broad bill that is grey with a black tip. The bill is also bordered with a thin white stripe. The male has black upperparts, white sides and a white belly and the female has dark brown upperparts, lighter brown sides with darker markings and a white belly. Both the male and the female have small, bright orange eyes.
Tufted Ducks are quite sociable ducks and can often be seen in small groups feeding together. They can also become quite tame, especially if they live in parks that are often visited by humans. Tufted Ducks can dive up to fourteen metres deep in water when looking for food such as freshwater shrimps, mussels and crustaceans. They also eat insects and larvae from caddis flies.