Male and female greater scaup Aythya marila, photographed by Greg.

Belongs within: Anatinae.

Aythya is a genus of diving ducks including pochards and scaups. Diving ducks have a short, heavy body, with large legs placed further back and wider apart than those of other ducks, a strong lobe or flap on the hind toe, and pale rather than metallic specula on the wings. They are usually gregarious, often forming large flocks. Members of the genus include the greater scaup A. marila, widespread in the Holarctic region, males of which have a black head and breast with a green or purple gloss on the head, grey back and white belly; females are largely brown with a large white patch at the base of the bill. The canvasback A. valisineria of North America is a large duck with a long bill and smoothly sloping profile; males have a reddish-brown head and neck and black breast.

<==Aythya Boie 1822 (see below for synonymy) CC10
    |  i. s.: A. baeri (Radde 1863) I92
    |         ‘Nyroca’ capensis [=Fuligula capensis] K08
    |         A. chauvirae Cheneval 1987 M02
    |         A. innotata JT12
    |--+--A. australis (Eyton 1838) JT12, CC10 (see below for synonymy)
    |  |    |--A. a. australis RN72
    |  |    `--A. a. extima RN72
    |  `--A. nyroca (Güldenstädt 1770) JT12, CC10 (see below for synonymy)
    `--+--+--+--*A. marila (Linnaeus 1761) CC10, JT12, CS77 [=Anas marila CC10]
       |  |  |    |--A. m. marila CS77
       |  |  |    `--A. m. mariloides (Vigors 1839) [incl. A. marila nearctica Stejneger 1885] CS77
       |  |  `--A. affinis JT12 [=Marila affinis D56]
       |  `--+--A. fuligula (Linnaeus 1758) JT12, CC10 (see below for synonymy)
       |     `--A. novaeseelandiae (Gmelin 1789) (see below for synonymy) CC10
       `--+--+--A. americana JT12
          |  `--A. collaris (Donovan 1809) JT12, CS77 [=Anas collaris CC10, *Perissonetta collaris CC10]
          `--+--A. ferina (Linnaeus 1758) JT12, CC10 (see below for synonymy)
             `--A. valisineria JT12

Aythya Boie 1822 [incl. Fuligula Stephens in Shaw 1824, Fulix Sundevall 1836, Ilyonetta Heine & Reichenow 1890, Marila Reichenbach 1852, Nyroca Flemming 1822, Perissonetta Oberholser 1920, Zeafulix Mathews 1937; Fuligulidae] CC10

Aythya australis (Eyton 1838) JT12, CC10 [=Nyroca australis CC10; incl. N. nyroca dampieri Mathews 1912 CC10, Aythya australis ledeboeri Bartels & Franck 1938 CC10]

Aythya ferina (Linnaeus 1758) JT12, CC10 [=Anas ferina CC10, Fuligula ferina M02, *Marila ferina CC10, Nyroca ferina CC10]

Aythya fuligula (Linnaeus 1758) JT12, CC10 [=Anas fuligula CC10, *Fuligula fuligula CC10, *Fulix fuligula CC10, Nyroca fuligula D56; incl. Anas cristata Fischer 1778 CC10, Fuligula cristatus L81]

Aythya novaeseelandiae (Gmelin 1789) [=Anas novaeseelandiae, Anas novaezealandiae, Fuligula novaeseelandiae, Fuligula novaezealandiae, Fulix novaeseelandiae, Marila novaezelandiae, Nyroca novaeseelandiae, *Zeafulix novaeseelandiae; incl. Anas atra Ellman 1861, Anas atricilla Forster in Lichtenstein 1844, Zeafulix novaeseelandiae maui Mathews 1937] CC10

Aythya nyroca (Güldenstädt 1770) JT12, CC10 [=Anas nyroca CC10, *Ilyonetta nyroca CC10, *Nyroca nyroca CC10; incl. Aythya rufa G73]

*Type species of generic name indicated


[CC10] Checklist Committee (OSNZ). 2010. Checklist of the Birds of New Zealand, Norfolk and Macquarie Islands, and the Ross Dependency, Antarctica 4th ed. Ornithological Society of New Zealand and Te Papa Press: Wellington.

[CS77] Cramp, S., & K. E. L. Simmons (eds) 1977. Handbook of the Birds of Europe, the Middle East and North Africa: The Birds of the Western Palaearctic vol. 1. Ostrich to Ducks. Oxford University Press: Oxford.

[D56] Dawes, B. 1956. The Trematoda with special reference to British and other European forms. University Press: Cambridge.

[G73] Gauntlett, F. M. 1973. Notes on some Kashmir birds. Journal of the Bombay Natural History Society 69 (3): 591–615.

[I92] Iwahashi, J. (ed.) 1992. Reddo Deeta Animaruzu: a pictorial of Japanese fauna facing extinction. JICC: Tokyo.

[JT12] Jetz, W., G. H. Thomas, J. B. Joy, K. Hartmann & A. Ø. Mooers. 2012. The global diversity of birds in space and time. Nature 491: 444–448.

[K08] Kellogg, V. L. 1908. Wissenschaftliche Ergebnisse der Schwedischen Zoologischen Expedition nach dem Kilimandjaro, dem Meru und den Umgebenden Massaisteppen Deutsch-Ostafrikas 1905–1906 vol. 15. Corrodentia pt 4. Mallophaga. Almqvist & Wiksells Boktryckeri-A. B.: Uppsala.

[L81] Long, J. L. 1981. Introduced Birds of the World: The worldwide history, distribution and influence of birds introduced to new environments. Reed: Sydney.

[M02] Mlíkovský, J. 2002. Cenozoic Birds of the World. Part 1: Europe. Ninox Press: Praha.

[RN72] Rutgers, A., & K. A. Norris (eds.) 1972. Encyclopaedia of Aviculture vol. 1. Blandford Press: London.

Last updated: 27 November 2021.

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