You often see shovelers floating on the water with their head dunked in the water and their hind end pointed skywards. That's how they forage for food. They are true omnivores. They have an unusual beak, whereby the upper half extends over the lower half. This allows them to strain duckweed and aquatic animals out of the water. It is their strangely shaped bill which makes it easy to recognize them.
Fairly common migrant and winter resident from late August to early May. Found in shallow ponds and marshes. The head of the male is dark green, the female's dull brown.
The birds in this exhibit are a male in breeding plumage (left), a male in non-breeding plumage (center) and a female on the right. Males have black bills. Females have lighter bills, sometimes described as olive green with small dark spots, but also appearing to be orange, with or without spots apparent in current imagaes. All have the unique bill shape that gives the bird its common name.