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Black-bellied whistling duck

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Alan Schmierer
/
Wikimedia Commons
Black-bellied whistling ducks

The black-bellied whistling duck (Dendrocygna autumnalis), formerly called the black-bellied tree duck, is a whistling duck that breeds from the southernmost United States, Mexico, and tropical Central to south-central South America. In the US, it can be found year-round in peninsular Florida, parts of southeast Texas, coastal Alabama and Mississippi and seasonally in southeast Arizona, and Louisiana's Gulf Coast. It is a rare breeder in such disparate locations as Arkansas, Georgia, Tennessee, and South Carolina, though it is now a common breeder in parts of central Florida.

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Rudy Mancke served as naturalist and co-host of South Carolina ETV's NatureScene, which began its long run in 1978. His field trips, broadcast nationwide, have earned him a legion of dedicated viewers. Rudy's knowledge of the complex inner-workings of different ecosystems and his great admiration for the natural world make him the perfect guide. In fact, the National Wildlife Federation and the Garden Club of America honored his commitment to resource conservation with special awards. Since retiring from SCETV, Rudy has gone on to teach at the University of South Carolina, Columbia.