The African Black Duck (Anas sparsa) is a species of duck of the genus Anas. It is genetically closest to the mallard group (Johnson & Sorenson, 1999), but shows some peculiarities in its behavior (Johnson et al., 2000) and (as far as they can be discerned) plumage; it is accordingly placed in the subgenus Melananas pending further research.
The African Black Duck is an entirely black duck with white marks on its back. It lives in central and southern Africa.It is also known as the black river duck, or (A. s. leucostigma) West African black duck or Ethiopian black duck.
It is a very shy and territorial duck. It is usually seen in pairs or small flocks. It breeds throughout the year in different areas. Incubation is about 30 days by the mother and the fledgling period is 86 days and only the mother takes care of the young.
It is a medium sized duck and is similar in size but when seen in pairs the male is noticeably bigger. Their egg quantity ranges from 4 to 8 eggs.
Though it likes to stay in rivers and streams during the day it prefers large open waters during the night. This duck likes water in the wooded hills of Africa and also like to hide its nests near running water. Also the Anas sparsa makes its cup shaped nest of driftwood and matted grass. Though it builds its nest near running water it is always above flood level and on the ground.
It feeds off of larvae and pupae usually found under rocks, aquatic animals, plant material, seeds, small fish, snails, and crabs.