Fun Laysan Duck Facts For Kids | Kidadl


Fun Laysan Duck Facts For Kids

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The Laysan duck, Anas laysanensis, or Laysan teal is a species of bird that belongs to the family Anatidae. They live with other species like the Laysan honeycreeper on Laysan Island.  They are non-migratory birds but only sometimes, they move to other islands or places when the weather is extreme. In the middle of the 19th century, the laysanensis disappeared from all over the world, except Laysan island. The introduction of non-indigenous species brought them to the verge of extinction. This geese species has been commonly known as the Laysan duck. Laysan duck teal has adopted all the characteristics and traits associated with the lack of ground-based predators. Their population has been declining over the past years.

In the 20th century, some of the teals were transferred from the Hawaiian Islands to various other Islands, including the Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge and Kure Atoll. The reintroduction of this bird was made possible with the help of the recovery plan of the US Fish and Wildlife Service. Laysan ducks are great swimmers and spend most of their time in the water. They have similarities and physical traits to geese and swans, but with some dissimilarities. The teals of Hawaiian Island possess distinct white eye-rings. Males have a green bill, while females have a dull orange-colored bill. Both the sexes live in the islands in Hawaii. The teals can walk well, but their flying ability is poor.

To know more about bird species, you can also check out swallow-tailed kite facts and Eastern Kingbird facts.

Fun Laysan Duck Facts For Kids

What do they prey on?

Macroinvertebrates, Algae, Seeds, Leaves

What do they eat?


Average litter size?

up to 4 eggs

How much do they weigh?

Up to 400 g

How long are they?

15-17 in (35.5-43.1 cm)

How tall are they?


What do they look like?

Dark Brown, Black, White, Green

Skin Type


What were their main threats?

Habitat Loss, Invasive Species, Human Disturbance

What is their conservation status?

Critically Endangered

Where you'll find them?

Swamps, Islands, Pacific Ocean, Laysan Island


Hawaii Islands









Laysan Duck Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a Laysan duck?

The Laysan duck is a type of duck. They are also a member of the mallard clade.

What class of animal does a Laysan duck belong to?

The Hawaiian duck, Anas laysanensis, is a dabbling duck that belongs to the Aves class of animals.

How many Laysan ducks are there in the world?

The population size of Laysan ducks is restricted to only 611 adult birds on Laysan Island.

Where does a Laysan duck live?

Like other dabbling ducks, Laysan ducks prefer to live in aquatic and aerial habitats. They nest in a bowl-like shallow which is filled with feathers, grass, and shrubs. Scientists believe that this duck species once lived throughout the Hawaiian archipelago before the occurrence of mass extirpation in that area after Polynesian colonization. Sometimes, Laysan duck nests with ducks of other species.

What is a Laysan duck's habitat?

The Hawaiian Laysan ducks are one of the birds of North America that mostly spend their lives in the water, in lagoons, marshes, and tidal pools of Laysan Island, Midway Atoll, and Pearl and Hermes Atoll area. They highly enjoy swimming and floating on waters where sometimes, they even feed on small fish and worms. It can be easily seen on the coast of Laysan Island or around the inland lake of this Island.

Who do Laysan ducks live with?

The Laysan rail mostly lives in pairs or groups. The mother duck is particularly known to live with her ducklings until they grow up.

How long does a Laysan duck live?

The average lifespan of this species is nearly 12 years in the wild. However, in captivity, these birds can live up to 16 years.

How do they reproduce?

The pair formation for mating in fall and winter and the nest building begins in the spring season. Only females construct a well-concealed nest on the earth's surface below dense vegetation. The nest is a shallow cup lined with dead grass and fallen feathers of birds. After mating, the females lay their eggs between April and August in their nest. The clutch size of laysanensis is approximately four eggs per bird. However, the latest established colony on the Midway Atoll lay more eggs, probably due to better food availability.

What is their conservation status?

The conservation status of the Laysan ducks has been Critically Endangered as per IUCN Red List. The Laysan duck population viability analysis shows a great decline in their population and presence. These birds have an extremely small range and show acute fluctuations in the population. However, the population trend is continuously enhancing. The reduction in the population size began between 400 and 1000AD when the Hawaiian island was colonized by Polynesians. The introduction of various non-native species like rats by these people affected the survival of native duck species. If proper initiative or care is not given to these birds, extinction will be the result in the future. Therefore, the US Fish and Wildlife and National Wildlife Refuge have provided certain laws and protection for them.

Laysan Duck Fun Facts

What do Laysan ducks look like?

Laysan ducks have brown-dominated feathers on their body.

The dark-brown Laysan ducks resemble a female mallard, with prominent white eye-rings. Bill color distinguishes the males and females. In males, the bill is small, spatulate, deep green with uneven black blotches, whereas, in females, the bill is pale orange with variable black blotches. Both sexes have a fat ring around their necks. They also have an iridescent purplish-green patch on their wings. These are known as speculum feathers. However, only a few males feature a vague iridescence on the neck or head and possess moderately upright central tail feathers. The legs are light orange-colored, usually more brilliant in the male.

How cute are they?

The Laysan duck, Anas laysanensis, is a two-legged bird with adorable colorful feathers. These features, along with their little pleasant calls, make them cute birds.

How do they communicate?

These ducks communicate through their quacking calls.

How big is a Laysan duck?

The Laysan duck, Anas laysanensis, is 14-17 in (35.5-43.1 cm) long, which is 10 times bigger than a fruit bat and almost three times smaller than a swan.

How fast can a Laysan duck move?

The flying capacity of this bird is not good. It cannot fly for a very long time or disperse within the Islands. However, they walk and run very well with the help of a pelvic girdle that adapted to land foraging. Also, since the Laysan duck evolution took place from avian predators rather than mammalians, they are more likely to walk than fly even though they belong to the bird species.

How much does a Laysan duck weigh?

A juvenile Laysanensis can weigh nearly 3.4 oz (98 g), whereas a mature one can weigh approximately 14.1 oz (400 g).

What are the male and female names of the species?

The male and female Laysan ducks do not have their specific names.

What would you call a baby Laysan?

Baby Laysan ducks are known as ducklings.

What do they eat?

The Laysan ducks dabble and filter feed along with the coastline and land vegetation on the Islands of Hawaii. They eat insects like cutworm larvae, moths, brine flies, and small crustaceans. The ducks also eat algae and seeds. Rats and mongoose are major threats to the Laysan duck.

Are they poisonous?

No, they are non-poisonous birds, but they may be vulnerable to carry certain diseases since they mostly live in the wild.

Would they make a good pet?

Laysan ducks are rare species. They are not available to keep as pets. However, these island birds are non-dangerous and beautiful creatures that would make a good pet. But the fact that their population is declining makes it difficult to buy and raise them as pets. Also, as they prefer places with water, it may be difficult to raise them at apartments.

Did you know...

There are many collective nouns for a group of ducks, such as flush, raft, brace, paddling, and team of ducks.

Today, these birds have a carrying capacity of around 500, and it is believed that it was much bigger earlier.

Earlier, the Laysan duck was hunted by the Japanese for food and feathers.

Loss of habitat due to climate degradation has been the main concern for these birds.

Are Laysan ducks endangered?

Yes, Laysan ducks are critically endangered species. The reason behind this includes invasive species like rats on the Hawaiian island. Today, they have been protected to avoid their extinction.

How did Laysan ducks get their name?

These ducks got their name after their endemic region, Laysan island.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other birds including blue-winged teal facts and common nighthawk facts.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable Laysan duck coloring pages.

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