Carolina Wood Duck

Carolina Wood Duck by the lake at Wingham Wildlife Park

Carolina Wood Duck Natural History


The average length of this duck is around 19 inches.

Habitat and Distribution

The Western coasts of North America and Mexico make up the bulk of the natural nesting and breeding range of this bird, however many live in the Eastern states in which lives in wetland areas and wooded swamps. These birds are often recorded on the Isle is Scilly as well as other areas of mainland UK as escapees from private collection.


This duck has a fairly short life expectancy at 3 to 4 years.


These omnivores feed largely on seeds and berries on land however will also eat small amounts of live insects.

Groups and Breeding

Females lay around 9 to 14 eggs however some nests may have up to 40 eggs in because some females may lay their eggs in neighbouring nests due to overcrowding in nest sites. These eggs will hatch out after around 27 to 33 days.


These birds until the start of the 20th Century was threatened through commercial hunting for the meat market and for the plumage to be used in decorating hats, however commercial hunting has since been banned. Its main threat now comes from habitat loss due to residential and industrial building.

Interesting facts

This bird is known as a very agile tree climber and is very good at flying through thick forest, which many ducks would struggle to negotiate

The Wood Ducks During Your Day Out in Kent

The Carolina wood duck is a beautiful species of duck, which in our park is only potentially rivalled in its beauty by the mandarin duck.  Both species can be found in the waters of the lake at the top of our park, alongside other species such as tapir, storks, pelicans and geese.