Odd Ducks

Crested Blue Swedish Ducks

I heard about a pair of strange looking ducks on Swan Lake seen by the Natural History class and went down to check them out. The only odd bird I saw was a Mandarin Duck that I had seen previously. When I talked to Kitty LaBounty, the instructor for the naturalist course, we discovered that the Mandarin Duck is not what they had seen. She and I went down there again to look and found the strange looking ducks. They were bigger than the mallards on the lake and had odd looking feather growths on their heads. I decided to call them ‘poodle ducks’ until I knew better, since the feather growth was reminicent of the way poodles are partially shaved.

After some searching on the internet, I was able to determine that these are Crested Swedish Ducks. As best I can tell, they are the Blue phase Swedish Ducks. It seems that any domestic breed (originally bred from mallards) can have a crest, though the crests do not necessarily persist in offspring of crested adults, and 25% die before hatching due to skull deformities. (More information on crested ducks.)

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