Hundreds of Bay of Plenty ducks are helping scientific research into their populations and habits by getting "blinged up" with bright, shiny bands on their legs.
As part of its annual research programme, Fish & Game puts the small metal bands on the ducks' legs to help gather crucial data such as the birds' movements, productivity, population sizes and survival rates.
Each band has a unique number which is recorded in the national bird banding database administered by the Department of Conservation.
When a band is recovered the number will show where and when it was originally banded and how long it has lived and travelled.
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Some ducks travel surprising distances, with bands recovered from Pacific islands such as New Caledonia.
This week Fish & Game's Eastern Region staff and volunteers started banding at Waewaetutuki Reserve near Pongakawa in the Bay of Plenty.
The banding programme has been running for 23 years and results in thousands of ducks throughout the North Island being banded.
As well as the Eastern Region, Fish & Game in Wellington, Auckland/Waikato and Taranaki are also part of the duck banding programme.
The information gathered from the banding research helps Fish & Game set sustainable duck harvesting numbers for the game bird hunting season and how long the season should be.