Friday, 28 January 2011

New Ducks on the Block

Whilst strolling around the lake at Trentham, we chanced upon a group of ducks that had been released from a carrier box near the cafe at the Monkey Park end of the Lake.  They were black birds with an iridescent green sheen in the bright sunlight.  The ducks were not afraid of humans and they were quite at home with the Mallards on  the lake.
The Cayuga duck was bred in the US and the name comes from Lake Cayuga in New York State.  Over the Atlantic they are bred for sale as duck meat in supermarkets.  In the UK they are an exotic breed of duck used to adorn lakes and parks.  These ducks have been judged in poultry shows since 1987.
The males will retain their black and iridescent green colouring for life.  The females, which still show characteristics of their Indian Black Duck ancestry will start to develop patchy white feathers when they are over 6 years old.  As they age, the white feathers become more dominant, until they are left with just a few random flecks of black amongst the white.

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