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Duck: Carolina wood-duck

Aix sponsa
Bird

IUCN Status
The Carolina wood duck despite it being hunted has a good increasing population and is of least concern to the IUCN (International Union for the Conservation of Nature). Many thousands of artificial nest boxes have been built recently which has enabled th



Diet

In the wild they feed by walking on land or dabbling on the surface of water for insects, berries, acorns and seeds.

Habitat

Probably the most beautiful North American waterfowl species! Carolina’s live in swamps, marshland and creeks of the Eastern USA.

Behaviour

Sharp claws for perching in trees enables these ducks to nest and roost whenever possible over water. Ducklings a soon as hatched can find their own food although they stay together as a family for protection.

Breeding

7-15 eggs are laid in sometimes 2 clutches

Fun Facts

Second only to mallard this used to be the most hunted waterfowl species in the USA.

As the beaver has been allowed to recolonise Eastern USA so these ducks have benefited from the water pools they create!

At The Zoo

We only have drake Carolina wood ducks on exhibit at the zoo. These can easily be mistaken for mallard during the summer as their brown occlusion moult camouflages them into our lake ducks!