The Mulard Duck is a large wetlands bird in the Anatidae family of dabbling ducks. It is a hybrid between the Muscovy Duck (Cairina mschata) and the domestic duck called the Pekin Duck (Anas platyrhynchos domesticus). It is also spelled Moulard Duck. It is also known as the Mule Duck.
The Mulard Duck is white with a pale pink beak. It has pink or red wattles (loose skin) around its eyes and beak. It has a wide, flat tail. It has long claws on its webbed feet. Its eyes are brown.
It grows to 66-84 centimetres (26-33 inches) in length, with a wingspan of 137-152 centimetres (54-60 inches). The female is about half the size of the male.
It is common in Europe, America, and south-east Asia.
It is a non-migratory bird – it is residential. It prefers forested swamps, lakes, streams, and nearby grasslands and farms. It often roosts in trees at night.
It dabbles in shallow water, looking for small fish, frogs, newts, reptiles, crabs, shrimp, insects, centipedes, and millipedes to eat.
The Mulard Duck is sterile, so it cannot have offspring (babies). Generally, Mulard Duck babies occur when the father (the drake) is a Muscovy Duck and the mother duck is a Pekin Duck.
The mother duck lays 8-16 eggs in a nest in a tree hole. The eggs hatch after 32 days. About half of the eggs hatch into Mulard Ducks. The chicks are precocial, which means that they are born with some soft feathers. The chicks stay with their mother for 10-12 weeks.
When the father is a Pekin Duck and the mother duck is the Muscovy Duck, then the young are called Hinnies.
Location of photographs: Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Photographer: Martina Nicolls
Martina Nicolls: SIMILAR BUT DIFFERENT IN THE ANIMAL KINGDOM