Kingdoms / Animalia / Craniata / Aves / Anseriformes / Anatidae / Aix / Species
< >  Aix galericulata - Mandarin duck (Click photographs/illustrations: full picture & further details)
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INFORMATION AVAILABLE

GENERAL & REFERENCES

EXTERNAL APPEARANCES

REPRODUCTION

BEHAVIOUR

NATURAL DIET

RANGE & HABITAT

CONSERVATION

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General and References

Alternative Names (Synonyms)

Mandarin
Mandarinente (German)
Canard mandarin (French)
Pato mandarín (Spanish)
Mandarijneend (Dutch)
Mandarinand (Swedish)

Names for newly-hatched

Downy; duckling.

Names for non-breeding males or other colour-phases

Eclipse.

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References

Species Author

Debra Bourne

Major References

B1, B3, B6, B8, B19, B25, B26, B38.

Aviculture references:
B7, B29, B11.33.w1, B31, B40, B41, B94, B96, B97, B108, B128.w1, N1.66.w1 D1, D8

ORGANISATIONS
(UK Contacts)

ELECTRONIC LIBRARY
(Further Reading)
Click image for full contents list of ELECTRONIC LIBRARY

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TAXA Group (where information has been collated for an entire group on a modular basis)

Parent Group

Specific Needs Group referenced in Management Techniques

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Aviculture Information

Notes

General information:
  • Perching Ducks and "geese" are generally happier maintained fully-flighted if possible, for example in an aviary for the smaller species, or under flight netting.
  • While the larger species in this group are hardy, the smaller species may be more delicate and require winter shelter. These species eat a high proportion of vegetable matter and appreciate a grazing area. Most of these species are hole-nesters.
  • Many of these species are sociable outside the breeding season, although Cairina moschata - Muscovy duck, Cairina scutulata - White-winged duck, Pteronetta hartlaubii - Hartlaub's duck and Plectropterus gambensis - Spur-winged goose can all be aggressive and require separate enclosures.

(B7, B11.33.w1, B94, D1)

Species-specific information:

  • Mandarins are winter-hardy, although they may require shelter in severe climates, and may be kept in various types of enclosure, including fully-flighted in aviaries. They are easy to manage and suitable for mixed-species collections. They my be fed e.g. grain, pellets, duckweed or other greenfood and bread.
  • These ducks are easy to breed. Laying usually begins from end of March or later, and may continue to June (UK). Raised (e.g. 2-3 feet (60-90cm) high nest boxes are preferred (12x12x12inches (30x30x30cm) with a 4inch (10cm) entrance hole) and a ramp leading from the ground or water to the hole for flight-restricted birds.although they may also use a tunnel nest box. Poor fertility in some strains is thought to be related to inbreeding. Many females sit reliably, some are nervous.
  • Ducklings may be reared by the female or by a foster duck or a broody hen or handreared. they are easy to rear, although they initially try to jump or climb out of rearing boxes, which must be covered, and require protection from rain and cold wind when young. Good results may be obtained by parent rearing in covered pens or aviaries. Foods such as chopped hard-boiled egg and duckweed are useful initially for ducklings in addition to rearing crumbs. Pens for ducklings must be covered, as they are good climbers.
  • Pairing with Aix sponsa - Wood duck has been reported but eggs were infertile; there have been no confirmed hybrids. N.B. these ducks have a different chromosome number from other waterfowl; hybridisation appears to be impossible.

(B7, B29, B31, B40, B41, B94, B96, B97, B108, B128.w1, N1.66.w1).

Aviornis UK Ringing Scheme recommended average ring size: J 9.0mm (D8).

Individual Techniques linked in Wildpro

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External Appearance (Morphology)

Measurement & Weight

Length 17-20 inches, 43-51cm (B3); 41-51cm (B1).
Adult weight General 444-550g (B3); 444-500g (B1).
Male --
Female --
Newly-hatched weight --
Growth rate --

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Head

Adult Bill Male Red, with pink-white nail.
Variations (If present) Female: pinky brown with pale tip
Eyes Male Dark brown, with pale yellow outer ring
Variations(If present) Female: dark brown.
Juvenile Bill Pinky brown with pale tip
Eyes (Iris) Dark brown.

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Legs

Adult Male Orange-yellow.
Variations (If present) Female: dirty yellow.
Juvenile Dirty yellow.

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Plumage

Adult Male Forehead and crown iridescent black and extending into long crest, cheeks tawny-buff, deepening to neck long feathers orange/chestnut. White, buff-tinged band from eye level upward across sides of head and trailing away down sides of crest.

Breast maroon, separated by two sets of vertical white and black lines from flanks tawny/buff with narrow band of white and black at upper edge. Centre of underparts white (breast to undertail coverts inclusive). Tail and back olive brown, longer uppertail coverts blue/green. Upperparts mainly dark olive-brown.

Wings olive brown, scapulars iridescent blue, secondaries iridescent green with white tips, primaries iridescent black with white on outer webs. Distinctive orange ‘sail’ on either side of upperparts formed from elongated 12th tertial feathers.

Variations (If present) Female: Head grey , thin white line around eye and extending caudally along neck, thin white line around bill and under chin and fine striations of sides of head and neck. Breast and flanks pale buff mottled with brown, underparts white, upperparts basically greenish brown/olive. Wings similar to male but without orange ‘sail'.

Eclipse: Similar to female.

Juvenile Similar to female but duller, streaked rather than spotted breast and flanks, dark spots on white abdomen.

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Newly-hatched Characteristics

General: Upperparts olive-brown with yellow spots on wings and sides, underparts yellow, dark line backwards from eye.
Bill: Brown.
Feet: Dark grey.

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Reproduction

Reproductive Season

Time of year Begins April, including in Britain.
No. of Clutches One.

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Nest placement and structure

In tree hollows.

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Egg clutches

No. of Eggs Average --
Range 9-12 (B1); 9-15 (B8).
Egg colour White.

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Incubation

28-30 days (B1, B8).

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Hatching

Synchronous.

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Fledging

40-45 days (B1, B8).

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Sexual Maturity

Males One year old.
Females One year old.

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Behaviour

Feeding Behaviour

Adults Dabble on surface, head-dip and up-end.
Newly-hatched --

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Parental Behaviour

Nest-building Nests solitary.
Incubation By female.
Newly-hatched Tended by female
Juveniles

--

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Social Behaviour

Intra-specific Gregarious except when nesting.
Inter-specific --

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Sexual Behaviour

Pair bond may be renewed over several breeding seasons, but males are sometimes promiscuous while the female is incubating and may form a second temporary pair-bond at this time.

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Predation in Wild

--

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Activity Patterns

--
Circadian --

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Natural Diet

Adults

Varied diet. Acorns, other nuts, grain, aquatic plants (seeds, stems, and roots) seeds and fruits of other plants, insects, small fish, and snails.

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Newly-hatched

--

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Range and Habitat

Distribution and Movement (Migration etc.)

Normal
Occasional and Accidental Reported in north-east India, Burma, Hong-Kong. Escaped birds may be seen throughout North America and Europe.
Introduced

Britain.

  • London: In the London Area, "established, locally common, feral breeding resident." Widespread in most of this area except for Kent; small numbers seen in Inner London. (J322.65.w1)

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Habitat

Pools, small lakes, rivers, marshes and swamps in thick deciduous forests, particularly with small islands for breeding

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Conservation

Intraspecific variation

--

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Conservation Status

Wild Population -
(Importance)

Asian population has declined substantially (B1).

General Legislation
  • This species is listed on Schedule 9 - Part 1 (Animals and plants to which Section 14 applies (ie. may not be released into or grown in the wild) ) of the LUK2 - Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 of the United Kingdom. (W5.Oct01)
CITES listing Listing not yet included.
Red-data book listing Listing not yet included.
Threats Habitat destruction, exports and formerly over-hunting (B1, B8).

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Captive Populations

Very common in collections (B8).

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Trade

--

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