Tuesday 17 April 2012

Apricot Wood Duck

This is a follow up to a puzzle about a peculiarly coloured Wood Duck.

Thank you to the Yahoo group for the Mandarin and Wood Duck Breeders Association for the replies to my enquiry.

The individual above is known in the trade as an Apricot Wood Duck. I am told that this is a colour mutation that can occur in the wild, but would very rarely be seen outside of private collections. In the past, such birds would have been collected as genetic stock for a breeding program that could reliably reproduce the pattern for the duck fanciers' trade. The genetic bank containing the apricot mutation trigger has probably been much depleted in the wild stock making such a mutation unlikely outside of selective breeding.

For a post including a more traditional Wood Duck, I refer you to the Stanley Park article

This is not a regular post. I found a Wood Duck with a strange colouration as part of a private collection recently and have made an enquiry to waterfowl collectors to see if they can tell me about it.

The base colour is buffy brown with a darker brown on the head. I suspect that it must have been specially bred for this effect.
If you have any comments about it, please reply either in the section below, on the waterfowl forum or by email to redgannet@gmail.com


  1. Whoa! Not the most stunning Wood Duck I've seen. It's leucistic, no?

    1. Hi Steve,
      10,000 Birds has made albinism and leucism trendy and I am trying to find out if this fella fits the mode.
      I have modified the post slightly as I had not previously mentioned that he was part of a private collection and it may be possible that he was bred for that colouration.