One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
The commonest duck of the northern hemisphere, the male having a dark green head and white collar.
Anas platyrhynchos, family Anatidae
- ‘There were about 50 coots, 25 shovelers, and a handful each of mallards and ferruginous ducks.’
- ‘This paper examines the function of female resistance behavior in one of the dabbling ducks, the mallard.’
- ‘We saw lots of waterfowl, mostly Canada geese and mallards with the odd Gadwall.’
- ‘The teals, mallards and other small ducks were all paddling about.’
- ‘The most abundant and widespread of all waterfowl, the mallard is also the most hunted game bird.’
Middle English: from Old French, ‘wild drake’, from masle ‘male’.
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