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Muscovy Duck

Muscovy Duck
Photo Information
Copyright: Peter van Zoest (PeterZ) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2013-09-20
Categories: Birds
Exposure: f/6.3, 1/2500 seconds
Details: Tripod: Yes
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2014-04-13 5:11
Viewed: 2072
Points: 32
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
This is a photo of a wild Muscovy Duck.
Normally I’m on the land, the ducks in the water. This time it was the other way around. I was sitting in a small boat on the water and the duck walked on the bank of a river.

The Muscovy Duck (Cairina moschata) is a large duck native to Mexico, Central, and South America. Small wild and feral breeding populations have established themselves in the United States, particularly in the lower Rio Grande Valley of Texas, as well as in many other parts of North America, including southern Canada. Feral Muscovy Ducks are found in New Zealand and have also been reported in parts of Europe.

They are a large duck, with the males about 76 cm long, and weighing up to 7 kg or 15 pounds. Females are considerably smaller, and only grow to 3 kg or 7 pounds, roughly half the males' size. The bird is predominantly black and white, with the back feathers being iridescent and glossy in males, while the females are more drab. The amount of white on the neck and head is variable, as well as the bill, which can be yellow, pink, black, or any mixture of these. They may have white patches or bars on the wings, which become more noticeable during flight. Both sexes have pink or red wattles around the bill, those of the male being larger and more brightly colored.

Although the Muscovy Duck is a tropical bird, it adapts well to cooler climates, thriving in weather as cold as −12°C (10°F) and able to survive even colder conditions.

The domestic breed, Cairina moschata forma domestica, is commonly known in Spanish as the pato criollo ("creole duck"). They have been bred since pre-Columbian times by Native Americans and are heavier and less able to fly long distances than the wild subspecies. Their plumage color are also more variable.

All Muscovy Ducks have long claws on their feet and a wide flat tail. In the domestic drake (male), length is about 86 cm and weight is 4.6–6.8 kg, while the domestic hen (female) is much smaller, at 64 cm in length and 2.7–3.6 kg in weight.
On the head, the wild male has short crest on the nape. The bill is black with a speckling of pale pink. A blackish or dark red knob can be seen at the bill base, and the bare skin of the face is similar to that in color. The eyes are yellowish-brown. The legs and webbed feet are blackish. The wild female is similar in plumage, but is also much smaller, and she has feathered face and lacks the prominent knob. The juvenile is duller overall, with little or no white on the upperwing. Domesticated birds may look similar; most are dark brown or black mixed with white, particularly on the head. Other colors such as lavender or all-white are also seen. Both sexes have a nude black-and-red or all-red face; the drake also has pronounced caruncles at the base of the bill and a low erectile crest of feathers.

C. moschata ducklings are mostly yellow with buff-brown markings on the tail and wings. Some domesticated ducklings have a dark head and blue eyes, others a light brown crown and dark markings on their nape. They are agile and speedy precocial birds.

The drake has a low breathy call, and the hen a quiet trilling coo.

This non-migratory species normally inhabits forested swamps, lakes, streams and nearby grassland and farm crops, and often roosts in trees at night. The Muscovy Duck's diet consists of plant material obtained by grazing or dabbling in shallow water, and small fish, amphibians, reptiles, crustaceans, insects, and millipedes. This is a somewhat aggressive duck; males often fight over food, territory or mates. The females fight with each other less often. Some adults will peck at the ducklings if they are eating at the same food source.

Source: Wikipedia

ramthakur, kinglove, CeltickRanger, oscarromulus, Pitoncle, imageme, marhowie has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

At ISO rating 1600 and shutter speed 1/2500, you have obtained a flawless image verging on three dimensional, Peter. God, how do you guys do it? I would end end up with tons of noise if I tried that!
What an adorable Duck! The very subdued colours on the plumage look divine and the white balance is just incredible.
Thanks for enriching us with this professional image.


照的清晰 很特別特別的鴨子
顏色鮮豔華麗 色彩很繽紛也很新奇
光線亮麗 彩色很美麗的顏色
構圖美麗 背景深遂

Hello Peter

Excellent close-up photo with very fine POV, DOF, and framing
of this exotic Duck, the warm light is very beautiful and big part
of the excellence of this photo, you managed superbly you camera
to obtain details of its dark plumage, TFS


Hello Mr.Peter,
Beautiful picture of this Duck.It seems wearing ornaments!Nice glossy feathers and well presentation.Beautiful colour.
Thanks for sharing,
Regards and have a nice time,

Ciao Peter, great capture of lovely duck, fantastic metallic colors, fine details and splendid sharpness, very well done my friend, ciao Silvio

Hello Peter,
Your white is not over exposed at all.
All the colours are well balanced.
Superb management of the camera.
Thanks for sharing.
Mario with kind regards from Calgary, Alberta, Canada.

Bonsoir Peter,
Agréable valorisation du sujet par l'appréciation de la finesse des détails et de la délicatesse des couleurs.
A bientôt sur TN pour de nouvelles aventures.

  • Great 
  • lousat Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6595 W: 89 N: 15659] (65489)
  • [2014-04-13 13:04]

Hi Peter,how is strange and nice the design of this duck with the metallic green plumage and red points around the face,very interesting post about this specie that i never seen before and top quality as usual.Have a nice week and thanks,Luciano

Impressive DOF intrigant metallic for the expressive guy. Fantastic light. Well done Peter!


Hello Peter!
Another superb shot, this time of this beautiful Muscovy Duck. Excellent details and sharpness, perfect POV and great depth. Small red growths around beak and eye-area are very interesting. I would like to know about a rather flat white portion in the middle. Thanks for sharing,
Best Regards,

  • Great 
  • KOMSIS Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 820 W: 0 N: 2419] (10674)
  • [2014-04-14 7:10]

Hallo Peter,
I never have seen until now ..
A fantastic duck. Nice colours good composition and sharpness details.
Best wishes,

hallo Peter
MOOI van lelijkheid
prachtige scherpe foto met veel details zien
de kleuren en licht zijn weer prachtig
pracht plaat
gr lou

Hi Peter, Fantastic shot of this duck. Perfect for every aspects. The light and colours are perfectly shown on the plumage of the this bird. I like its head and it has nice pattern on it. Wonderful POV with DOF. Thank for sharing

Sharp details, nice color Peter.
Interesting look, does he have chicken pox? ;-)
Well done.

Hello Peter,
Beautiful picture of this Duck.

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