Wood Ducks
aka Carolina Ducks

Aix sponsa

A pair of Woodies
Photo courtesy of Carol Kelly

This North American native is a beautifully marked little duck that does quite well in captivity -- but in the US you probably will need a permit to keep them.

While a breeding male is easy to identify, a male in eclipse plumage closely resembles the female, but maintains a bit of the throat pattern, the red eye coloring, and a longer eye stripe. Female Woodies are very similar to female Mandarins, but have a broader eye patch and lack the facial striations.

Woodies rarely nest on the ground. In the wild they use old squirrel or woodpecker holes and also readily accept manmade nest boxes. The usual clutch is 8-12 eggs and incubation lasts 28-30 days. After hatching the ducklings follow their mother out of the nesting hole, often dropping up to 20 feet to the ground without harm.

Woodie Links:

International Mandarin and Wood Duck Breeders Association

Nest structures for Wood Ducks

Jan's Ornamental Waterfowl

Wood Ducks at Morgan's Bantam Waterfowl and Chickens

Giffs Farm

Spruce Creek Waterfowl Farm

You can find 'em at Uberchic Ranch!

A Woodie drake
Photo courtesy of Jeff Gifford

A wild type Wood Duck drake with some examples of the Apricot mutation.

How to tell a Mandarin drake from a Wood Duck drake: that's the Woody on the right

And how to tell the females apart (which is harder); the Mandarins are on the left -- in Mandarins the eye is on the line, in Woodies the eye is in the line
Large photos courtesy of Maurice Houston Field; inset photo of Mandarin head courtesy of Pete Akers; inset photo of Woodies courtesy of andy@gm0eco.com

A wild Woodie drake in Rosendale, NY
Photo courtesy of Stefan

A male Wood Duck
Photo courtesy of Parker

Captive Woodies on a pond in Hawaii
Photos courtesy of Lee Sandler

A wild drake on the water
Photo courtesy of Carol Kelly

Six-month-old Woodies, with a clearer shot of a female on the right
Photos courtesy of andy@gm0eco.com

Two-month-old Wood Ducks
Photo courtesy of Kim Cartwright

Another Woodie drake
Photo courtesy of Jim Kavanagh

Woodies from the front
Photos courtesy of Monika Malling

The new Silver mutant of the Wood Duck at Frazier's Aviaries

Here's an Apricot Wood Duck on her nest
Photo courtesy of Sally Zacharias

Here's a nest box good for both Woodies and Mandarins. Hang it on a tree or post a few feet above the ground. If the birds are pinioned, you need a ramp for them to get to it. For more links on nest boxes check the bottom of the links list on my Exotics page.
Photo courtesy of Cody Everett

Photo courtesy of Carol Kelly

12-day-old Woodie ducklings
Photos courtesy of Kim Cartwright



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