Mandarin duck Facts

Mandarin duck Facts
Mandarin duck is a close relative of North American Wood duck. This beautiful bird can be found in Eastern Asia, China, Russia, Europe and certain parts of North America. Mandarin duck can survive in various habitats. It usually inhabits areas near lakes, ponds and rivers, but it can be also found in broadleaf and coniferous forests and near the urban areas. Number of Mandarin ducks in the wild decreased due to habitat loss as a result of deforestation. Pouching is another factor which affects number of Mandarin ducks in the wild. Even though its population is greatly reduced, Mandarin duck is not on the list of endangered species.
Interesting Mandarin duck Facts:
Mandarin duck is a medium sized bird. It can reach 8 to 10 inches in length and weigh between 1.5 and 2.5 pounds. Females are larger than males.
Mandarin ducks are known as one of the most beautiful and the most colorful birds. Their plumage is combination of white, black, grey, creamy, orange and green colors. Beak is red with white tip.
Males can be easily distinguished from females because they are more brightly colored. This phenomenon is called sexual dimorphism.
Mandarin duck spends a lot of time in the water. It has webbed feet which facilitate paddling through the water. Oily substance covers the feathers and prevents soaking of the skin.
Mandarin duck is active during the day, mostly in the early morning and late afternoon hours.
Mandarin duck is an omnivore (eats both plant- and animal-based food) and its diet depends on the season. During the autumn and winter, Mandarin duck eats acorn and various seeds. Insects, worms, snails, small fish and frogs are on the menu during the spring.
Main predators of Mandarin duck are raccoons, minks, otters, eagles and snakes.
People do not hunt Mandarin duck for its meat because it does not have pleasant taste.
Asian Mandarin ducks are migratory. They spend cold winters in the eastern China and southern Japan.
Mating season takes place in the spring. Mandarin ducks are monogamous animal (one couple mate throughout their entire life).
Mandarin ducks are symbol of fidelity and great love in China and Korea because of their mating habits.
Female builds a nest in the tree cavity. Male guards the female but does not participate in the incubation of eggs.
Female lays 9 to 12 eggs during the April and May. After incubation period of 34 to 36 days, baby ducks (called ducklings) will hatch.
Young ducks will discover water soon after the hatching. Mother will call them from the ground to jump down and follow her to the nearest body of water. Although they land from the high trees (sometimes 30 feet from the ground), ducklings do not end up injured from the fall.
Mandarin duck can survive more than 12 years in captivity.

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