Mandarin Duck

Mandarin Duck by the lake at Wingham Wildlife Park

Size.

This duck is generally from 41cm to 49cm long.

Habitat and Distribution.

The natural range of this bird cover areas of Russia and China, with its largest population however being in Japan. After escaping from collections all around the country there is now a healthy feral population in the United Kingdom.

Age.

The average life span of these birds is 12 years however they are known to reach ages of up to 20 years.

Diet
Feeding mainly at Dawn and Dusk, these birds feed predominantly on seeds and plants found on land.

Groups and Breeding.

During the winter these ducks will often form small flocks however generally they will pair up for life and stay in their breeding pairs, not associating with other ducks. This birds nests are built in the trees and shortly after hatching the young are coaxed to jump the nest and join the mother on the floor to be reared on the ground and in the water.

Threats.

Wild numbers, especially in China and Russia have decreased massively due to vast exportation in the past for the pet trade.

Interesting facts.

Due to their pair habits these birds are a Chinese symbol for partnership and the metaphor for two people in love in Japanese culture is for them to be like mandarin ducks playing in the water.