A rather small duck, that can fly very fast. Rare to find in North America during the winter months when they spend most of their time in South America.
In the the summer they enjoy fresh ponds, marshes, but also brackish marshes near the coast. When they migrate, they have been seen over the ocean, sometimes many miles offshore.
Their diet consists mostly of plant material, such as seeds of various grasses, pondweeds and sedges. Occasionally been know to eat insects and crustaceans.
They usually forage in shallow water, by partially submerging their head while swimming forward. Sometimes they’ll find food items from the surface of the water.