13 Spectacularly Colorful Duck Breeds

Colorful Duck Breeds
Photo by Mathias Elle

If you love ducklings, you’ll love the 13 different colorful duck breeds available today! Ducks aren’t just the fuzzy little yellow ones that many people think of when they hear the word duck.

There are many different breeds of ducks, some with unique colors and patterns on their feathers!

 Duck races have long been famous in many parts of the world, including the United States and Europe; learn more about these amazing animals by reading this article.

Or better yet, go check out some of these incredible colorful duck breeds at your local pet store!

1. The Mandarin Duck

The Mandarin Duck is native to East Asia and is one of the most colorful duck breeds in the world. These ducks are easily recognized by their distinctive orange-red bills and multi-colored plumage.

Mandarin Ducks typically mate for life and build their nests in trees near water. If you’re lucky enough to spot a Mandarin Duck, you’re sure to be impressed by its beauty!

It’s said that the Mandarins symbolize love and fidelity because they form lifelong bonds with mates. So if you ever want to find true love, look no further than this beautiful duck!

2. The Knob-Billed Duck

The Knob-billed Duck is a large, heavy duck with a distinctive knob on the bill. It is found in Africa, south of the Sahara. The body plumage is drab, but the wings are brightly colored. 

These colorful duck breeds are good swimmers and can dive underwater to feed on aquatic plants. They eat mainly vegetables, grains, seeds, and fruit. A single clutch contains 6-10 eggs which take 30 days to hatch.

After mating, they lay their eggs at intervals over several weeks. Ducks from other species occasionally steal these eggs for themselves and thus end up as foster parents!

Another interesting fact about this bird is its natural enemies: crocodiles, wildcats, feral dogs, and snakes! One thing’s for sure – you’re not going to forget about the Knob-Billed Duck anytime soon after reading this post!

3. The Spectacled Eider Duck

The males of this species are exceptionally breathtaking, with black and white plumage and a giant white spectacle around their eyes.

The females are also lovely, with a more subdued color palette of gray, brown, and white. These colorful duck breeds make their homes in the Arctic tundra, where they build nests out of plants and feathers.

 In winter, they migrate south to coastal areas. They have been hunted for their meat, eggs, down feathers, and oils used in folk medicine as a treatment for skin conditions like psoriasis.

Sadly, only 5% of the world’s population is left. However, these colorful duck breeds have been classified as a Species of Least Concern by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) due to their ability to adapt easily to different habitats.

4. The King Eider Duck

The King Eider is a large seaduck that is found in the Arctic regions of North America, Europe, and Asia.

The male has black and white plumage with a greenish-black head, while the female is brownish-gray with a white chin and throat. These colorful duck breeds near Greenland, Iceland, Siberia, and Alaska coastlines.

King Eider is the most prominent member of the Eider duck family. Males are predominantly black and white with a dark green head; females are gray with a whitish chinstrap.

They are standard on Iceland, Greenland, Siberia, and Alaska coasts. Its name comes from its resemblance to an older man’s beard. 

The males have black and white plumage with a greenish-black head, while the females are brownish-gray with a white chin and throat.

These colorful duck breeds nest at coastal sites such as islands off the coast of Norway, where they dive for food from great depths.

5. The Ruddy Duck

The Ruddy Duck is a small freshwater duck with a stout body, big bill, and relatively long legs. They get their name from their reddish-brown plumage. Ruddy Ducks are native to North America and can be found in the United States, Mexico, and Canada.

These colorful duck breeds are migratory and travel long distances between breeding and wintering grounds. In the fall, Ruddy Ducks head south to coastal marshes, where they spend the winter. Come springtime, they return to their breeding grounds in northern lakes and ponds.

When it comes to mating, these birds have an attractive courtship display that includes two males jumping up and down on one leg while flapping their wings.

It’s unknown how long this ritual lasts or why males do it, but it might serve as a way for females to judge which male would make the best father of her offspring. The female will then lay eggs after mating with the winning male.

6. The White-Headed Duck

The White-Headed Duck is a threatened species of waterfowl native to southern Europe and parts of Asia. The male has a white head and neck, while the female’s head is brown. Both sexes have dark brown bodies with light-colored wing bars. 

These colorful duck breeds in marshes, wet grasslands, and winter in coastal waters. They are primarily found on lakes and rivers, feeding on insects, crustaceans, mollusks, fish eggs, and other small aquatic life. They live up to 12 years old in captivity.

 Females lay 4 to 8 eggs per clutch, and males incubate them for about 25 days. One way you can tell the sex of the ducklings from inside the eggshells is by observing their eye color: if they’re blue or green, they’re most likely males; if they’re brown or black, they’re females.

7. The Long-Tailed Duck

The Long-tailed duck is a seaduck that breeds in the northern hemisphere. The adult male has a black head, white breast and belly, and gray back. The adult female has a brown head and body with white patches on the wings.

Both sexes have long necks and tails. The males also have yellow eyes, while the females have dark eyes. These colorful duck breeds are excellent swimmers and can dive up to 60 feet underwater in search of food.

They eat crustaceans, fish, mollusks, worms, and aquatic plants. They live near shorelines on fresh or salt water ponds, lakes, or bays. They can be found all over North America and in Europe and Asia.

As they are migratory birds, they will fly south for the winter if it gets too cold where they are living. However, some populations may stay at one location year round because they cannot travel far due to ice cover or other natural barriers.

Unlike most other waterfowl species, these ducks do not breed in colonies but rather form groups known as rafts.

8. The Northern Shoveler Duck

The Northern Shoveler is a large dabbling duck with a long, broad bill. The male has a green head, white breast, and rusty sides. The female is mottled brown.

These colorful duck breeds are in northern areas of North America and Eurasia. They build nests in marshes and lay 8-12 eggs. The diet of the Northern Shoveler consists of aquatic invertebrates such as insects, crustaceans, and mollusks.

Males are sexually mature at one year old, while females are sexually mature at two years old. The breeding season for these colorful duck breeds lasts from April to September, but they may start breeding earlier if the winter weather is not too severe. Males defend territories where females will come for courtship and copulation.

9. The Mallard Duck

The Mallard is the most familiar duck in North America and perhaps the world. It’s also one of the most colorful, with a green head, brown body, white breast, and black tail.

The Mallard is a famous bird for hunting and wildlife watching, but it’s also known for being messy and destructive in urban areas.

 If you’re looking for colorful duck breeds to add to your flock, the Mallard is a great choice. They are also very hardy birds that can handle both cold and hot climates. 

The Brahma has a distinctive purple sheen on its feathers, making it one of the most beautiful colorful duck breeds.

They are generally larger than other breeds, so make sure that there is plenty of room for them if you decide to keep them as pets!

10. The Surf Scoter Duck

The Surf Scoter is a seaduck that can be found along the coasts of North America and Europe. These colorful duck breeds get their name from their habit of diving for food in the surf.

Male Surf Scoters are black with white patches on their wings, while females are brownish-black with white streaks.

Both sexes have orange bills and feet. If you see one near the water, they’ll appear as almost a dark shadow against the ocean.

They’re also timid and will quickly fly away if you come too close. There are only about 12,000 left of these beautiful creatures, so it’s important to enjoy them when you spot them!

11. The Smew Duck

The Smew duck is a small, colorful waterfowl that is found in Europe and Asia. The male Smew has a black head, white body, and gray wings. The female Smew is brown with white streaks on her head and back.

Both sexes have a black tail and orange legs. The Smew is a very social bird and can often be seen in large flocks.

They are hardy birds that do well when kept as pets or in public collections. In the wild, they feed mainly on insects and plant material but are also known to eat crustaceans and mollusks when available.

They can live up to 20 years if properly cared for! If you’re interested in keeping one of these beautiful colorful duck breeds as a pet, don’t hesitate to get in touch with your local animal shelter or avian veterinarian for more information about their care requirements.

12. The Blue-Winged Teal

The Blue-Winged Teal is a small dabbling duck common in North America. The adult male has a blue wing patch and a green head, while the female has a brownish head.

These colorful duck breeds are migratory and can be found in wooded areas near water during the breeding season. 

In the winter, they often congregate in flocks on open water. It’s hard to miss these colorful duck breeds as they make loud quacking sounds when approaching their favorite food: bread.

If you want to see these beautiful birds up close, visit a bird sanctuary or wildlife refuge near you!

13. The Cinnamon Tea

The Cinnamon Tea is a unique breed of duck that’s easily recognizable thanks to its unique coloration. The body of the duck is a rich brown, while the breast and wings are a beautiful cinnamon-red.

This color combination is truly stunning, and it’s no wonder this breed is so popular among duck enthusiasts.

 If you’re looking for colorful duck breeds to add to your flock, the Cinnamon Tea is a great choice. These colorful duck breeds are generally easy to care for but require more attention than others due to their needs as a layer.

However, if you want an egg layer in addition to your flashy waterfowl, then these ducks may be just what you need!


Whether you’re an avid birdwatcher or appreciate a gorgeous animal when you see one, there’s no denying that ducks are some of the most beautiful creatures on earth.

And while all ducks are lovely, some colorful duck breeds are more colorful than others. You can pick any out of these 13 spectacularly colorful duck breeds.

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