Speculum feathers

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A male mallard. The speculum feathers are bright blue with white edges

The speculum is a patch, often distinctly coloured, on the secondary wing feathers, or remiges, of some birds.

Examples of the colour(s) of the speculum in a number of ducks are:

Bright wing speculums are also known from a number of other birds; among them are several parrots from the genus Amazona with red or orange speculums,[5] though in this case the colors are pigmentary and non-iridescent.


  1. ^ a b c d Dunn, Jon L. & Alderfer, Jonathan (2006). National Geographic Guide to the Birds of North America. National Geographic Society. ISBN 1-4262-0072-2.
  2. ^ a b Bellrose, Frank C. & The Audubon Society (1983). The Audubon Society Master Guide to Birding. National Geographic Society. ISBN 1-4262-0072-2.
  3. ^ a b Madge, Steve; Burn, Hilary (1988). Waterfowl: an Identification Guide to the Ducks, Geese, and Swans of the World. Boston: Houghton Mifflin. ISBN 0-395-46727-6.
  4. ^ Zimmerman, Dale A.; Turner, Donald A.; Pearson, David J. (1999). Birds of Kenya and Northern Tanzania. Princeton University Press. ISBN 0-691-01022-6.
  5. ^ Robert S. Ridgely & John A. Gwynne, Jr. (1989). Birds of Panama with Costa Rica, Nicaragua, and Honduras. Princeton University Press. ISBN 0-691-08529-3.