Species found in SE & SW Australia. Inhabits freshwater as well as brackish lakes and river estuaries. Being nocturnal they spend most of the day resting. At night they feed in shallow water, dabbling and up-ending for aquatic shoots, seeds, tubers, roots and for small invertebrates.
The nest made of down, is usually in a slight depression in the ground, hidden by long grass or thick vegetation. They sometimes nest in hollow trees or nesting boxes. Breeding is mainly from August to November. The usual clutch is 8-12 pale creamish-white eggs, which hatch in 26 days.