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Popular Domestic Duck Breeds

Updated on November 29, 2016
A black Indian runner duck, which will be discussed below.
A black Indian runner duck, which will be discussed below.

A Short Guide to Domestic Duck Breeds

I decided to create this guide to help people with choosing a duck breed best for them. I am still learning my breeds and don't propose to be an expert on all of them, so I may be adding to this article as I learn more. This is by no means a comprehensive guide to all domestic duck breeds as there are dozens and dozens to choose from. This is a guide to the most popular ducks one would see most commonly on farms and in backyards. I plan to add more detailed information on more duck breeds soon.

All photos in this article were taken by me. Those that weren't are credited.

Two Pekin ducks
Two Pekin ducks

Pekin Duck

Pekin ducks are just about the most popular farm duck in the world. Note, the spelling is Pekin, not Peking (which is a type of Chinese food dish), though the breed did originate in China. These ducks are bred mostly for their meat as they grow and fatten up quickly. Most of the ducks one sees for sale at the grocery store are Pekin ducks, usually under three months old. Believe it or not, this breed originally was more black and more like a mallard. It took a long time of breeding before the ducks turned white and grew their fat, bulky bodies.

Pros: Pekin ducks are very social and bond to people easily. Some say that some ducks of this breed prefer humans over other ducks. They are also unable to fly and easy to find. Their meat is considered very tasty.

Cons: They can be loud. Also, because they're bred to grow large very fast, they are prone to leg problems, especially if their diet is not carefully controlled and monitored. Pekin ducks can also have difficulty breathing and moving around due to their bulkier size and sudden death is not unusual with this breed during stress or hot weather. Pekin males can be very aggressive and injure smaller breeds.

Crested Pekin

Crested Pekin
Crested Pekin | Source
A hatchery quality Indian runner
A hatchery quality Indian runner | Source

Indian Runner ducks

Some people just shorten their name to "Runner Ducks." They didn't originate in India, but in the "East Indies" and Indonesia. They are distinctive in that they stand straight up and tend to run like penguins do. One indicator of breeding quality is that higher quality ducks tend to resemble a bowling pin in uprightness and slenderness. They can also come in a wide range of colors and varieties.

Pros: Runner ducks are excellent foragers and decent egg layers. Like Pekins, they also can't fly. They are also funny to watch and come in a lot of really cool varieties and colors.

Cons: They can be more nervous and less friendly. They don't make nests and will drop their eggs even while walking around. They are also more harder to obtain and one often has to order them through hatcheries or breeders. Females tend to be loud, but not as loud as Pekins.

Brood Your Ducklings the Safer Way

Avianweb EcoGlow 20 Chick Brooder
Avianweb EcoGlow 20 Chick Brooder

This product is a safe way to keep ducklings warm without using heat lamps, which can be very dangerous. The Eco-glow simulates a mother duck's warmth and even allows the ducklings to hide under it. It is not hot to the touch, so no worries about burns. You can even adjust the height as your ducklings grow.

Bigboi, a Cayuga duck
Bigboi, a Cayuga duck | Source

Cayuga Duck

This is an American breed developed in New York State that is all black, usually with a green sheen. Its exact origin is unknown and there are various legends surrounding its appearance.

Pros: Though they are medium-sized, Cayuga ducks still can't fly. They also lay black eggs, which is pretty cool. Cayugas have a wonderful and friendly disposition, especially if hand raised. They are also said to be very hardy and can tolerate colder temperatures and less-than-ideal weather. They tend to be reasonably quiet compared to other mallard-derived breeds.

Cons: Cayugas are a little more difficult to obtain. Birds that are not hand-raised are usually not very friendly.

Note: Cayuga ducks tend to turn white as they age and are disqualified from shows if they show white feathers. Females tend to go white faster and, by the end of their lives, may become entirely white.

Buffy, a buff duck
Buffy, a buff duck | Source

Buff Duck

Buff ducks, or buff Orpington ducks, are large beige ducks that originated in England. This duck is slightly larger than a Cayuga duck. Males tend to get brown or greenish-brown colored heads; females tend to be evenly beige.

Pros: Buff ducks are a dual-purpose breed, good for meat and egg production. They have a very friendly personality, easy going, and tend to be fairly quiet, though females can be vocal. These ducks cannot fly.

Cons: They can be bulky and prone to leg and hip problems. Males can be aggressive breeders, sometimes.

Tom the Muscovy duck
Tom the Muscovy duck | Source

Muscovy Duck

Muscovy ducks are actually tree ducks native to South America, Central America, and Mexico. They were even semi-domesticated by native peoples in those areas and used for eggs, meat, and feathers. They are closely related to other tree ducks such as wood ducks and whistling ducks.

Pros: Muscovy ducks are easy to care for, forage easily, and will even catch mice and small lizards. Very quiet, males make a soft hiss and females make a quiet quack, making them a popular pet duck for urban areas. They are also prolific egg layers and great mothers. Meat is said to be excellent and taste more like beef than duck.

Cons: Many people don't like the caruncles on the male's face. Though they are a large bird, they are very capable of flying and often escape and become feral. New laws may prohibit the ownership of Muscovy ducks for pet purposes.

Black Swedish duck
Black Swedish duck | Source

Swedish Duck

Swedish ducks generally come in two varieties, blue and black, and are often crested. They are medium-large in size and distinguished by their bright white chests. Some Swedish ducks have greenish heads.

Pros: This is a very calm, personable breed that is comfortable around people and forages easily. Swedish ducks are very hardy with good cold and heat tolerance and need little to no special care.

Cons: Some people complain about egg production problems, but complaints are minimal. There are very few complaints about this breed.

Welsh harlequin
Welsh harlequin | Source

Welsh Harlequins

Welsh harlequins are a newer breed of large duck that doesn't get as large or as fat as a Pekin. I haven't heard any specific health problem with this breed. They are known to be great farm or backyard ducks and great egg layers. The gender of ducklings can be determined soon after hatching: Males have darker bills and females have lighter bills with a dark spot at the end. These differences disappear within a few days. They're beautiful ducks; females can come in silver or gold.

The duck in the photo was just turning into his breeding colors and actually got much brighter a month later. Females are usually more overall silver/gold and spotted.

Pros: Welsh harlequins are said to be fairly quiet and great egg layers. Females often go broody and will raise their own ducklings. Also, they are good for meat. They are calm and good foragers.

Cons: They are harder to obtain. There are some possible problems with breeding and laying eggs, but these are very rare and unspecific. Some people complain about this duck's size/leanness in regards to being a meat bird.

Older bantam silver appleyard pair
Older bantam silver appleyard pair | Source


Appleyards are a beautiful birds known for being great egg layers as well as being visually appealing. There are also silver appleyards, which have more white around the chest and neck.

Usually, they are a large breed that can weigh up to eight pounds or more and also make great meat ducks. However, there are "bantam" appleyards that can be the size of a wild mallard or smaller. Coloration can vary with female appleyards and can range from light to dark, becoming more colorful as they get older. All female appleyards should have bright eyebrows and a white or light coloration on their chins and the undersides of their necks. Most females will have a white or bright breast, though this can vary between individuals as well. Male appleyards resemble snowy mallards and Welsh harlequins in color with "frosted" wings and bright undersides. This breed's males tend to have white on the head, usually on the underside or around the eyes, but it varies from male to male.

Pros: Appleyards are great egg layers and good meat ducks. They have a calm demeanor and fun personality, very social and curious with good intelligence. They are a beautiful breed with unique-looking ducklings, and their colors often get brighter with age.

Cons: Females are often very vocal and very loud. Bantam ducks are good fliers, but large ducks can have issues due to their heavy build.

More Domestic Duck Breeds

Here are some more common domestic duck breeds to choose from:

  • Mallard—Popular for coloring, egg production, and meat
  • Khaki Campbell—Good layer ducks
  • Rouen—Good all-purpose duck (meat and eggs), with mallard coloring.
  • Crested duck—Can be of any breed, most likely Indian runner, Pekin, or Swedish
  • Magpie duck—The pinto of ducks, magpies are white with black splotches. They are very good foragers and pest controllers
  • Australian spotted duck—Actually originated in the United States. Good foragers, but may be difficult to obtain
  • Saxony duck—Large breed, great egg layers, calm temperament

Duck Breeds on Video!

Here are a few videos describing the different breeds of ducks and tips on how to care for them, too! Most videos are done by P. Allen Smith. I chose these so that people can see all of the different farm breeds out there.

Crested White Pekin, Mallard, and Black Cayuga

Aylesbury and Pekin

Rare Domestic Ducks

Here is a small list of rarer and more-difficult-to-keep domestic ducks. These ducks are not recommended for beginners and are often very hard to obtain and breed. Some breeds, especially ornamental and wild-type ducks, may require permits and special enclosures.

  • Black East-Indies—Beautiful green-black color, very shy and fairly difficult to get
  • Call duck—Small, shy, very loud ducks.
  • Dutch hook bills—Newer breed in North America, mostly kept for exhibition
  • Wild duck breeds and ornamental waterfowl—Usually a permit is required to keep these, which are often untamed and skiddish. Examples of these types include wood and Mandarin ducks, Egyptian geese, whistling tree ducks, and ruddy ducks

Example of a Rarer Breed

Many people like to keep shelducks, an ornamental/wild-type duck. Some ornamental and wild-type ducks require special accommodations and feed to keep them happy and healthy. They may also require completely closed enclosures and some breeds can't be kept with other breeds. Some ornamental breeds are not as naturally friendly as the ones raised for farms. It's good to research the breed of duck you wish to get before getting them to make sure they are compatible with your lifestyle and other animals.

Rarer Breed: Paradise Shelduck

Paradise Shelduck by Kitty Terwolbeck, Creative Commons
Paradise Shelduck by Kitty Terwolbeck, Creative Commons | Source
Buff and crested duck
Buff and crested duck | Source

A Word About Buying Crested Ducks

Crested ducks, like the one on the left in this photo or the one on the Pekin in the photo above, are a result of a gene that causes the skull to remain partially open for the life of the duck. The crest actually forms on a fatty piece of tissue over a hole or soft spot in the skull. Generally, if only one parent carries the gene and the other doesn't, it is not a problem, and most ducklings will hatch healthy. However, if two crested parents breed, the gene can be lethal, and most of the ducklings will either not hatch or die soon after. So, care is needed if one wishes to obtain and breed crested ducks. Also, one must also keep a watchful eye on female crested Pekins so that males don't injure them during mating due to their crests.

Find out More About Raising Ducks

Here are a few suggestions on how to start your new duck family or farm. I picked these out either because I've been recommended them by my duck-owning friends or because of how helpful I've found them.

Storey's Guide to Raising Ducks, 2nd Edition: Breeds, Care, Health
Storey's Guide to Raising Ducks, 2nd Edition: Breeds, Care, Health

This is the bible of raising ducks. Most duck owners have read this book and swear by it. However, some people do disagree with a few fine points of the book. I suggested this book because it has a great deal of information about how to raise ducks and answers a lot of questions about feed, housing, and health.

This book does contain a section on culling, which may be disturbing for some people.

The Ultimate Pet Duck Guidebook: All the things you need to know before and after bringing home your feathered friend.
The Ultimate Pet Duck Guidebook: All the things you need to know before and after bringing home your feathered friend.

Written by a waterfowl rescue center, this is a great guide to everything you need to keep your ducks healthy and happy. It contains lots of color photos and practical advice on how to keep your ducks.


Places to Order Ducks or Find Duck Breed Information

Here is a short list of hatcheries and duck brokers who can help you find your perfect duck or find out information about a particular breed.

Ducks needing rescue
Ducks needing rescue | Source

How About Adopting a Rescue Duck?

As with other shelter animals, when you adopt a rescue duck, you may be saving a life. Some humane societies have ducks and geese up for adoption. Many waterfowl rescue centers are overflowing with pet waterfowl needing adoption. Adopting an duck or goose is for pet only purposes. Of course, eggs are often a side benefit if you adopt a female. Adopters will be screened to make sure they are ready for their new pet.

The advantage of this is that you don't have to go through that duckling phase when you will need brooders and special food and bedding (not to mention all the mess and other hazards) You will also often get an extremely grateful, loving pet. The disadvantage of this is that you might not get the breed you like (unless you like Pekins) or you might have to adopt all males. Also, some ducks are "special needs" ducks that need medicine and vet attention from time to time. But, if you are looking for a duck as a pet, this may be the way to go.

Contact your local ASPCA or domestic waterfowl rescue groups to see if any ducks are available for adoption. Most require the payment of a small fee.

Questions People Ask

I've noticed that people have certain recurring questions on keeping ducks, and I hope to answer them below. Personally, I deal mostly with feral and wild ducks and rely on my friends for much of my duck-keeping information, as well as some of the books and sites mentioned. I would suggest asking a duck expert such as Metzer Farms or Holderread's for specific questions on breeds.

  1. Will my Pekin get along with a Cayuga? (You can substitute your breeds for the two I mentioned.)

    From what I know, it all depends on the ducks. Most mallard-derived breeds tend to co-habitat very well, though each duck will have its own personality and likes and dislikes. I would suggest keeping ducks that are the same size together rather than keeping very large breeds with smaller breeds. Also, the ratio of males to females should be one male for three females of about the same size.

  2. Can Muscovy ducks get along with other types of ducks?

    Yes, they can, especially with larger breed ducks. They can also interbreed and have offspring, but that offspring will be sterile. These offspring are known as "mulards" or "mule ducks" and are said to be good meat ducks. Some female mulards can lay eggs, though they won't be fertile.

  3. Do I need a permit to keep ornamental breeds (or wild ducks)?

    You do sometimes need a permit, especially for native species like wood ducks, ruddy ducks, scaup, etc. Some areas may not allow the keeping of certain species. Permits may also be required of certain non-native species. Generally, to keep these types of ducks, it's required to have a completely enclosed pen or enclosure where there's no chance of escape.

  4. Can I keep ducks and chickens together?

    Sometimes. It depends on the duck. It is generally not recommended to keep male ducks and female chickens together as male ducks can kill the chickens through attempted mating. Female ducks and chickens are usually OK. Be aware, ducks are way messier than chickens and sometimes make a mess of the chicken coop.

  5. When can ducklings go outside on their own?

    Generally, it depends on your climate and your time of year. Ducklings usually need a heat source for their first two weeks of life, 24 hours a day. Most ducklings can go outside in warmer weather during the day by the time they're a month old, though they will need to be protected from predators. It is generally recommended that they don't go outside full time until they're fully feathered at about seven to eight weeks.

  6. When can ducklings start swimming?

    Ducklings do not produce their own preen oil, which keeps them waterproofed, until they're about two weeks old. In the wild, they get this oil from their mother. Though they can swim from about day one or two, they must be supervised and the sessions should be short and in at least luke-warm water. Ducklings need to be thoroughly dried after they swim and placed back under or near a heat source.

So, What Kind of Duck Did You Choose?

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    • profile image 

      2 years ago

      Sandra Sez: Please note that very nearly ALL domesticated ducks are off-shoots of the Mallard (Anas platyrhyncus) which is why they share a lot of characteristics. I carve decoys and usually stick to the wild varieties. However I am always entertained by the domestic varieties I can find at the local city pond. Please also note the white generally indicates a mark of domestication and long term association with human beings. This is true in turkeys, sheep and others who have wild counterparts. It can also be noted that domestication not only generally makes critters tamer but less, ahem, "Smart" than their wild bretheren.

    • profile image


      3 years ago

      wonderful information, beautiful pictures thank you

    • Shorebirdie profile imageAUTHOR


      4 years ago from San Diego, CA

      Hi Claire! I sent you an email.

    • profile image

      Claire Whitwam 

      4 years ago

      I live in Cape Town, in South Africa. I have two Pekin females. They are about 3 years old currently, but since this last moult have ceased to lay. We feed poultry mix and they free range over our property. We have about 1500 sq meter plot. They have a kiddie sand pit as a pond, cleaned regularly, and separate drinking water provided. We occasionally see partly formed eggs without shells ddropped on the lawn.

      Help, what are we doing wrong? Please mail me some advice to I am desperate! Many thanks.

    • AnonymousC831 profile image


      5 years ago from Kentucky

      Great lens, very informative. Cute ducks. :-)

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      great,very informative post.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Love it

    • Merrci profile image

      Merry Citarella 

      5 years ago from Oregon's Southern Coast

      Love the paradise shelduck, but they are all beautiful.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      I liked, but if I had to choose, then I would choose the first one.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      @anonymous: Daffy would be a Swedish,I have four,they are so neat

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      We have a duck family and love our little feathered friends! We have Fawn runners, Rouens, Cayugas and Swedish ducks- 23 in all! They roam free on our farm pond in upstate New York but come running when called (here duck ducks!) Thank you for for this site as we continue to enjoy our little duck dynasty!

    • LoriBeninger profile image


      5 years ago

      We have a beautiful (although not very showy) breed in some of the local ponds -- I can't seem to find a picture/name...but I'll keep looking. Love ducks!

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      In my neighborhood we have a lake with Canadian ducks that look a lot like those buff ducks.

    • Shorebirdie profile imageAUTHOR


      5 years ago from San Diego, CA

      @lballiache: Yes, it's a growing trend, especially in modern times. People have kept ducks and geese as pets before, but more so now. Some even keep them indoors or as therapy animals.

    • lballiache profile image


      5 years ago

      We didn't know that ducks could be pets too. Really thanks for your lens.

    • Shorebirdie profile imageAUTHOR


      5 years ago from San Diego, CA

      @DebMartin: LOL, love it!

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      I had a rescue duck once. He only had one leg. We suspect some underwater critter like a N Pike got his leg. He had a basket in the house with a feeding tray attached and he had his own little swimming pool. He was all white and his name was Dwight as in "De-White Duck" Love him!

    • amosvee profile image


      5 years ago

      I used to live in the country on a lake, and we could go outside and whistle -- within a minute or two, a flock of half-domestic ducks would be running/flying across the little lake for treats. They're cute!

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      I love the ducks! Great info! I didn't realize there were so many different kinds.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      anyway i found this lens really interesting, the runner ducks, Muscovy ducks and the Welsh Harlequin got my attention i love that breed.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      wow i can see why this lens was picked for lens of the day very informative a certainly the sort of detail i should be looking into when creating my next lens

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Well I did not know that there were so many domesticated ducks, from what I read the runners do seem to be my favorite.

    • weakbond profile image

      Nnadi bonaventure Chima 

      5 years ago from Johanesburg

      Highly informative lens , thanks for sharing

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      I almost never saw ducks as a kid, growing up in a dry desert. I like them and think it would be fun to have one for a pet.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Wow!What a thorough,well written lens! Who doesn't like ducks?

    • favored profile image

      Fay Favored 

      5 years ago from USA

      I've had ducks twice in my life. Once when I was a child, and when my class had them for a science fair. After the fair I couldn't get any of my students parents to take the ducks like they said they would. They lived in my tub until they got too big. I think the second set were buff ducks, but not sure. They ended up at a campground in Tennessee and begat, and begat and begat just like God intended :) Congratulations on LotD.

    • SusanAston profile image


      5 years ago

      They are all beautiful. My aunt used to have Indian Runner and Carolina ducks on a pond in her garden. They were such characters.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Awww I am such a sucker for baby chicks!!

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Ducks are beautiful birds. Thanks

    • MrAusAdventure profile image


      5 years ago from Gold Coast, Australia

      Who would have thought that there would be so much to know about ducks! This should save someone just ducking out and buying one unaware of the risks. (sorry, could not resist) Congrats on LOTD :-)

    • Shorebirdie profile imageAUTHOR


      5 years ago from San Diego, CA

      @Shades-of-truth: You might want to view my Squidoo page on Tom the Muscovy duck that I wrote. He was feral, but a real sweetheart.

    • Shades-of-truth profile image

      Emily Tack 

      5 years ago from USA

      I was so glad to see this, as I wrote a Lens about our pet Muscovy duck, Archimedes. We just loved her, and rescued her from the alligator in our lake, that killed her mother. She was an incredible personality, and held long conversations with my husband. We feed mallard ducks and black ducks, who come to our back door, begging for duck food. I suppose MY favorite duck, is the Muscovy duck. Archimedes passed away, but she was one terrific duck. She resented me, I "think", because I gave her that name, before I knew she was a "she".

      My husband likes mallards, but that is because he likes to eat them.

    • BunnyFabulous profile image


      5 years ago from Central Florida

      I like a lot of these ducks, but I especially like Muscovies since there's a lake near my home where a bunch of them have their home. Their ducklings are super cute!!

    • jericho911 lm profile image

      jericho911 lm 

      5 years ago

      @SteveKaye: I like that ! Five quacks ! lol

    • jericho911 lm profile image

      jericho911 lm 

      5 years ago

      I favor mallards simply because I'm familiar with them and they eat from my hand !

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Myself, I was looking for Daffy but...Just kidding, honest. Super lens, congratulations on getting LotD!

    • slpsharon profile image


      5 years ago

      When I was a child my grandparents raised chickens, ducks and geese together. Since they were all raised in the same henhouse and the mothers did the work we did not have too much trouble.

      Every now and then a broody hen swiped eggs. They were so funny when the waterburds went in the water and joined their own kind.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      I like wild ducks of any species. Then I can take photos of them. This is an excellent lens that deserves a full five quack rating.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Congratulations on LotD, ducks are very cute

    • LisaMarieGabriel profile image

      Lisa Marie Gabriel 

      5 years ago from United Kingdom

      Lovely! I shall also tell my sister to drop in - she adores ducks! :D

    • Tom Maybrier profile image

      Tom Maybrier 

      5 years ago

      These are all very nice ducks, but my pick is definitely the Mandarin Duck - I hope someday I can own a few of my own!

      Enjoyed your lens!

    • Mary Stephenson profile image

      Mary Stephenson 

      5 years ago from California

      Congratulations on LOTD. Never thought much about ducks, but you have shown that there are many different kinds. Interesting lens.

    • seashell2 profile image


      5 years ago

      The crested Pekin looks like a beautiful duck,. We have a beautiful park nearby where we can watch the ducks float around during the summer months. Great page! ;-)

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Amazing variety in this species. The Crested Pekin is my favorite.

    • DreyaB profile image


      5 years ago from France

      We got a duck with a load of chickens and a turkey, and from this lens I assume it must be a Pekin though I'm not in the USA so don't know if breeds are different. The funny thing to me is that the turkey and duck are inseparable and go around the garden together. Thanks for the info and great lens.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      All of them, I love ducks.

    • Susan Zutautas profile image

      Susan Zutautas 

      5 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      I've always loved to watch the ducks down at the lake. I never knew much about them and found your lens very interesting. I can't choose as I like all of them :) Congrats on lens of the day!

    • PaigSr profile image


      5 years ago from State of Confusion

      Growing up on a lake I am very used to ducks. They had a tendency to buzz the lake early in the morning. Or would go swimming by hinting to be fed. And that was on a daily basis. Congrats on the LOTD.

    • Dressage Husband profile image

      Stephen J Parkin 

      5 years ago from Pine Grove, Nova Scotia, Canada

      None, I think my cat would have too much fun chasing the babies! Nice lens very well written, congratulations on the LOTD.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Interesting topic. Thanks .

    • delia-delia profile image


      5 years ago

      Congratulations on LOTD! When we had our Horse Ranch someone gave me three (Mallards?) they'd run through the barn. Then our neighbors Hybrid Wolves killed them...I cried and was so angry...I fell in love with the Paradise Shelduck pictured here.

    • HughSmulders LM profile image

      HughSmulders LM 

      5 years ago

      Looking at these birds, the first thing to cross my mind is the series FRIENDS, in particular, Joey and Chandler.

    • KnitnPurlGirl profile image


      5 years ago

      A very interesting lens. Congrats in LOTD!

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      I love how you cover so many different breeds in this page. Duck breeds is actually something I've thought about a lot too.

      I can definitely attest to Muscovy ducks escaping and forming feral populations. In Miami, there are huge feral populations all over...but even once in Delaware, I found a stray Muscovy duck that showed up on a farm (a farm that doesn't raise ducks). From its behavior (it seemed pretty tame, and the fact that it showed up on a farm rather than suitable wild habitat) I gathered it was probably an escaped domestic duck. They're peculiar-looking things.

      On some level I actually feel better about people raising some of these ducks, ones that cannot survive as easily in the wild, because I think it can be problematic if mallards (the most commonly cultivated duck) are domesticated but then breed with wild ducks, because it passes traits into the gene pool that are probably not adaptive to this species living in the wild...and I think it fuels these massive (and sometimes messy) populations of semi-feral mallards in cities and suburban parks.

    • Faye Rutledge profile image

      Faye Rutledge 

      5 years ago from Concord VA

      I never knew there are so many breeds of ducks! Congratulations on LotD! :)

    • GregoryMoore profile image

      Gregory Moore 

      5 years ago from Louisville, KY

      I have always liked the Pekin ducks. We had a neighborhood pond with many of these ducks and my kids used to love feeding them on our evening walks.

    • Northerntrials profile image


      5 years ago

      I choose the Pekin just because they are fast from egg to table. They would not be pets.

    • Christine Cameron profile image

      Christine Cameron 

      5 years ago

      Lots of great information on duck breeds here, great read!

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      I helped raise some wood ducks for a while but they've gone to a farm now. I like your pictures of different breeds of duck and you have some good advice. The question and answer part at the end is very informative.

    • Legenden profile image


      5 years ago

      Well earned lens of the day! :D

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      I like Welsh harlequin and Crested pekin. nice photos.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Love this lens. Congratulations for the LOTD!

    • marktplaatsshop profile image


      5 years ago

      Congratulations on LotD, great lens ducks are so cute

    • Mommy-Bear profile image


      5 years ago

      I am lucky enough to have a small lake and two darling ducks. They are very friendly and either knock on the windows or walk straight into the house when they are hungry. They make me smile every day.

      One is a Mallard and the other, a big black duck - breed unknown.

    • k4shmir profile image


      5 years ago

      Very interesting topic. Thanks for sharing.

    • k4shmir profile image


      5 years ago

      Very interesting topic. Thanks for sharing.

    • Meganhere profile image


      5 years ago

      Great lens. I love ducks.

    • verymary profile image


      5 years ago from Chicago area

      Loved the photos, but your Q&A is my favorite part...answers some of the "nitty gritty" on keeping and caring for these wonderful critters. Nice work.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      i have a pet duck her name is fuzzy her breed is muscovy duck.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      never thought that the world is blessed with so many duck species

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      So informative ! like it

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I like Pekin Duck.

    • Shorebirdie profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from San Diego, CA

      @Shorebirdie: Thanks!

    • Shorebirdie profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from San Diego, CA

      @anonymous: I think you're right. I will change the description. I was going by what the photographer said it was.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Your picture of a white faced whistling duck is actually a female paradise shelduck. Just FYI

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I chose Crested Pekin. I like the crest existing on his head.

    • Sitabodang LM profile image

      Sitabodang LM 

      6 years ago

      Great lens! After reading this, I now know that the duck next door is a Crested Pekin! Now about that chicken!

    • sheilamarie78 profile image


      6 years ago from British Columbia

      We don't have any ducks at the moment but we've thought about raising them. Thanks for the information.

    • Shorebirdie profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from San Diego, CA

      @suepogson: Thanks for reading my articles. You don't have to give away your females, just collect their eggs if you suspect they might have been mated by the crested males. :)

    • suepogson profile image


      6 years ago

      Thanks for the info about crested ducks. I have 2 crested Pekins - both male but had no idea that mating a pair could be problematic. Now I know to give away any female crested babies that might happen along.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I had a duck as a pet when I was very young. He followed us all over the yard. Nice lens.

    • vegetablegardenh profile image


      6 years ago

      Nice lens! We own a pair of ducks that are a mixed breed (Khaki-Campbell/Indian-Runner), they are great slug and snail hunters in our garden and super funny to watch. :)

    • LynetteBell profile image


      7 years ago from Christchurch, New Zealand

      The Crested Pekin looks like he's wearing a hat! lol

    • BLemley profile image

      Beverly Lemley 

      7 years ago from Raleigh, NC

      I like the good ole mallard ~ my folks had wild ones that settled on their property and raised their babies. They marched around their yard, with the babies close behind. They were soo cute! But they sure left a mess! Great lens, I enjoyed reading about the characteristics of the breeds. Very interesting! B : )

    • Shorebirdie profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from San Diego, CA

      @pawpaw911: They're cute. One thing that has to be noted with crested ducks is that they have issues, especially when it comes to breeding them. Breeding two crested ducks can result in 75% of the ducklings either never hatching or having fatal neurological problems. Adults can be prone to problems, too. But, generally, there isn't much of a problem as adults if they only have one crested gene.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      I Like the Crested Pekin.


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