Facts about Forest Ducks. The origin of the Forest duck can be traced back to 1890 where Herman Bertrand from Vorst wanted to breed a blue duck with good laying ability and excellent meat quality. Herman named his duck after his name, a name that was later changed to Vorst (Forest in French) by the community that lived near Brussels at that time. This is the main reason why the origin of the Forest Ducks has nothing to do with the woods and perhaps, the wild. During an exhibition in 1905 that took place in Halfeeuwfeestpaleizen, Brussels, a group of 30 blue Forest ducks were exemplary in color and personality. The Forest Duck showed magnificent small lacing resembling that is commonly seen with Andalucía chickens. In 1924, 24 beautiful Forest ducks were exhibited in Crystal Palace, London. This escalated demands of the Forest duck from UK as well as other countries. In fact, there came a time when the city council of St-Petersburg in Russia had requested about 350 hatching eggs. However, this never happened because of the World Wars, which ruined everything. The World Wars almost wiped out the entire population of the Forest Ducks.
In the wild The male Forest Duck will guard their nest by chasing away other ducks. Once the female Forest Duck lays 5 to 8 eggs, she will start to sit on her eggs to keep them warm so that they can hatch into baby Forest ducklings. In the wild the Forest Duck eggs will hatch on average within 26 to 28 days. Baby ducklings are able to fly within 5 to 8 weeks. In captivity the Forest Ducks will lay more eggs, when there is more daylight, that's why farmers will keep the lights on in the Forest Ducks house for longer periods of time. The Forest Duck is a blue duck, which has evolved from various breeding attempts meant to improve the quality of eggs and meat.
Various varieties of the Forest Ducks exist with differing plumage. Some varieties have coppery orange shanks while others have brownish ones but the blue color dominates in all the varieties. The Forest Duck drakes weigh more than the female ducks. It is taken in Germany as a very close breed to Cayuga and Gimbsheim ducks. The Forest Duck are independent ducks making them one of the easiest birds to keep. The Forest Duck are excellent egg layers and the ducklings mature very fast.
A male adult Forest Duck is called a (drake) and a adult female Forest Duck is called a (hen). A young baby Forest Duck is called a (duckling). A group of ducks is called a brace, raft, team, flock, or paddling. The male Forest Ducks (drakes) are the brighter colored ducks while the female (hen) are usually a plain colored brown for hiding purposes to be camouflaged from their enemies when they are sitting in their nests.
Forest Duck Characteristics
The Forest Duck are a tough duck breed who have less healthy and adaptability problems. The Forest Duck are large ducks weighing about 6.6 pounds (3kg). Featured by a deep breast, the Forest Ducks have slightly upright carriage while the abdomen is fully developed especially with females. The Forest Duck have blue bills and the legs are dark with no mark of any other color. Pure Forest ducks have become rare these days because of the multiple breeding.
A Forest Duck is a Precocial (meaning) Born or hatched with the eyes open, a covering of hair or down, capable of a high degree of independent activity from birth and able to leave the nest just a few hours after hatching.
Forest Ducks are related to swans and geese and the duck is the smallest of these birds with shorter wings and neck and a stocky body. Forest Ducks on average, live 4 to 8 years and can live up to 12 years, depending on the breed. Forest Ducks are omnivores; meaning - an animal that eats food of both animal and plant and origin.
Forest Duck Water-proof feathers
A special feature that the Forest Duck has is its water-proof feathers, even when the duck dives underwater, its downy under-layer of feathers will stay totally 100% dry. There is a special gland called the "Preen Gland" also called Oil Gland or Uropygial, that produces oil that is near the Forest Ducks tail which covers and spreads the outer coat of the Forest Ducks feathers, which makes the duck water-proof.
Forest Duck egg features
A Forest Duck egg has twice the nutritional value than a chicken egg and will stay fresh longer because of their thicker shell.
Forest Duck eggs are richer with more Albumen "the white of an egg" making pastries and cakes richer and fluffier. A Forest Duck Egg has more Omega 3 fatty acids than a chicken egg. Omega 3 is thought to improve skin health, memory and Brain health. Duck Eggs are an Alkaline producing food and a Chicken egg is an acid food and leaves your body more acid. Forest Duck eggs are high in Cholesterol. Duck eggs have 6 times the Vitamin D and 2 times the Vitamin A than a chicken egg. Forest Duck eggs have 2 times the cholesterol than a chicken egg.
Appearance of the Forest Duck feet
Forest Ducks have webbed feet, that makes them act like paddles, designed for swimming. The Forest Duck push their webbed paddle feet back in a kicking motion, this allows them to move swift through the water and when the feet come back, the Forest Duck will close for less water resistance. The Forest Ducks paddle feet do not feel cold, even when it swims in cold icy water. The webbed feet makes a Forest Duck waddle instead of walk. The Forest Ducks feet have capillaries which help blood flow to their feet. The warm blood flow down the leg and creates a heat exchange system. When the blood flows down the leg, it meets the cold blood and is warmed up to keep the ducks feet warm. Forest Ducks feet are thin because they contain soft tissue and few muscles.
Scientific name for Forest Duck "Anas Platyrhynchos" meaning - Wild dabbling duck from which domestic ducks are descended; widely distributed. From New Latin "anas" meaning (Duck) and the word Platyrhynchos comes from "platyrrhine", Ancient Greek meaning (broad snouted, flat-bridged nose). The definition of Anatidaephobia is irrational fear that you are being watched by a duck. Forest Ducks are birds in the Class of "Aves". Ducks of all types are part of the bird family "Anatidae". Forest Ducks are also called "waterfowls" they are generally found in places were there is water, such as ponds, rivers, streams, lakes and occasionally your back yard pool. Forest Ducks fly in a “V” shape to makes flying easier.
Underneath the water-proof coat are downy soft fluffy feathers which keep the ducks body warm. Forest Ducks keep clean by being able to turn their heads completely backwards, and put their beaks into their feathers by preening themselves.
Forest Ducks see in color with very good vision and can see well underwater. Forest Ducks have three eyelids the third eyelid called nictitating membrane. They have a top and bottom as well as a third eyelid that is found on the side of the eye. The Forest Ducks eyelid blinking acts as a windshield wiper to clear the eye. This helps to see when diving under water can also help the eye from drying out while flying. This is an act of constantly cleaning and keeping the eye moist.
Appearance of the Bill of the Forest Duck
A "bill" is what is call a Forest Ducks mouth. There are no teeth in the Forest Ducks bill, they have rows of thin bristles, which helps them to filter pieces of nutrition out of the water. Forest Ducks swallow there food whole and it goes to an organ called a gizzard, were the food is first ground up and than moves on to the stomach. The different bill shapes and sizes for finding food, has over time mutated to fit each environment. The Forest Ducks bill is flat and broad and has rows of fine incision along the outer edge called "lamellae". meaning a thin membrane, plate, scale or layer, as of cell wall or bone tissue. The larnellae helps the Forest Duck to clutch food for feeding.