The common shelduck (Tadorna tadorna) is probably named from a Middle English dialect sheld which means pied. It is widespread and common in Eurasia. The Common Shelduck is perceived as a duck even more so than the Ruddy Shelduck. Both species, however, belong to the Tadorninae, which are between actual ducks and geese according to their behaviour and colouring.One of the most colourful waterfowl, the shelduck is renowned for its spectacular moult gatherings along the northern coast of Germany. These concentrations are often enormous, the most famous one is the German Waddenzee reaching over 100,000 birds and including most of the north-west European population: Britain, Ireland, Belgium, Holland, Denmark, Scandinavia, north Germany, north Poland and the Baltic States.