Both sexes can be distinguished from all ducks except Northern Shoveler by the long, black, spatulate bill. Th plumage is finely speckled grey-brown and the legs are a rich orange in colour.
Male has a paler head and yellower eyes than female. Female is darker and greyer than Northern Shoveler, especially around the head and neck, and lacks white edges to the tail. Juvenile resembles female.
Fresh water, preferably with surface vegetation.