Fun White-winged Duck Facts For Kids | Kidadl


Fun White-winged Duck Facts For Kids

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A white-winged wood duck (Asarcornis scutulata) is a native of Southeast Asia and is widely distributed in Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam. This species is listed as Endangered due to various human activities, loss of genetic variability, and a wide, fragmented distribution of their population. With a decreasing population trend, this species is possibly extinct in Bhutan, Java, and Malaysia.

This semiaquatic animal, of the family Anatidae and genus Asarcornis scutulata, is one of the largest species of duck besides steamer ducks. This species belonged to the genus Cairina scutulata before being placed in the genus Asarcornis scutualata. They live in evergreen, deciduous, or swamp forests and wetlands. They can also accommodate themselves in perennial rivers, ponds, and artificial aquatic habitats. The primary diet of omnivorous white-winged wood duck includes seeds, aquatic plants, rice, grain as well as small fish, snails, insects, snakes, and frogs. The males and females generally weigh between 6.5-8.6 lb (2.94-3.9 kg) and 4.3-6.7 lb (1.95-3.05 kg), respectively. The length of their body ranges from 26-32 in (66-81 cm) with a wingspan of 46-60 in (116-153 cm). This forest duck is black in color with a yellowish bill. The head and neck are white in color with blackish mottling all over them. This species breeds between February to May and lays around 16 eggs at a time.

Keep reading to know more interesting facts about white-winged ducks! Check out African black duck facts and Australian shelduck facts to learn more about them.

Fun White-winged Duck Facts For Kids

What do they prey on?

Small fish, snails, insects, snakes, frogs

What do they eat?


Average litter size?

16 eggs

How much do they weigh?

Male: 6.5-8.6 lb (2.94-3.9 kg) Female: 4.3-6.7 lb (1.95-3.05 kg)

How long are they?

Body: 26-32 in (66-81 cm) Wingspan: 46-60 in (116-153 cm)

How tall are they?


What do they look like?

Black, white, bluish-gray with a yellowish bill and red-orange eyes

Skin Type


What were their main threats?


What is their conservation status?


Where you'll find them?

Rivers, Wetlands, Dense Evergreen, Deciduous, Or Swamp Forests


Southeast Asia









White-winged Duck Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a white-winged duck?

A white-winged wood duck is one of the largest duck species. It is similar to steamer ducks that are slightly heavier, or Muscovy ducks that are a little smaller in size.

What class of animal does a white-winged duck belong to?

A white-winged wood duck belongs to the class Aves. Warm-blooded vertebrates belonging to this class have several characteristic features including feathers, beaks, laying eggs, and a feather-weighted skeleton.

How many white-winged ducks are there in the world?

The population trend of white-winged ducks is decreasing and currently, their total population has reduced to between 350-1500.

Where does a white-winged duck live?

A white-winged wood duck is widely distributed in several countries of Southeast Asia namely, Bangladesh, Cambodia, North East India (Assam), Indonesia, Lao People's Democratic Republic. These ducks are also found in Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam, Java, and Sumatra. This species is found in these locations all year since they do not migrate.

What is a white-winged duck's habitat?

A white-winged duck prefers to live in the wild, in dense evergreen, deciduous, or swamp forests. They also inhabit wetlands, perennial rivers, ponds, and can also accommodate themselves very well in man-made aquatic habitats.

Who do white-winged ducks live with?

White-winged ducks live in groups comprising four to six members and are usually found to roam in pairs. However, groups of more than 10 individuals have also been found.

How long does a white-winged duck live?

In the wild, a white-winged duck's lifespan is between 10-15 years.

How do they reproduce?

The breeding season of white-winged ducks falls between February to May. The breeding activity starts in February and continues until July. A month before the monsoons arrive, the ducks lay 16 eggs in their nests inside a tree hole. They incubate the eggs for 33 days, after which, they start hatching with the onset of the rain. The ducklings roam about independently after being looked after by their parents for 14 weeks.

What is their conservation status?

The white-winged wood duck has been listed as Endangered by the IUCN due to human activities that pose a threat to their natural habitats. They also suffer from disturbance, hunting, and collection of meat inside protected areas. Some of the key protected areas where it is conserved are Dihing Patkai Wildlife Sanctuary, Dibru Saikhowa National Park, Nameri National Park, and Namdapha National Park.

White-winged Duck Fun Facts 

What do white-winged ducks look like?

White-winged Duck

A white-winged duck is entirely black with a yellowish bill and red-orange eyes. When in flight, the white color of the wing-coverts is visible. This species of duck got its name from here. Their head and neck are white as well with black spots all over them. The secondary feathers are bluish-gray in color. The tertials and median-coverts are covered with white feathers. Both the male and female look alike except for the male's plumage which is glossier than the female's.

How cute are they?

Certainly, a white-winged duck looks extremely beautiful in a glossy black and bluish-gray plumage with white wing-coverts. Its appearance is enhanced by the red-orange eyes and a black-spotted head and neck.

How do they communicate?

A white-winged duck has a ghostly call that echoes through the woods. The Assamese people call them 'Deo Hans', in other words, a 'spirit duck', for their ghostly call.

How big is a white-winged duck?

The length of their body ranges between 26-32 in (66-81 cm) with a wingspan of 46-60 in (116-152.4 cm). The females are smaller than their male counterparts. They are larger than Muscovy ducks who are 34 in (86 cm) on average.

How fast can a white-winged duck fly?

With a wingspan of 46-60 in (116-152.4 cm), the white-winged duck is the fastest to fly and the most agile among the other duck species.

How much does a white-winged duck weigh?

The weight of a male white-winged duck ranges between 6.5-8.6 lb (2.94-3.9 kg) and that of a female is between 4.3-6.7 lb (1.95-3.05 kg). They are lighter than steamer ducks that weigh around 7.7-15.4 lb (3.5-7 kg).

What are the male and female names of the species?

The male and female names of this species are drake and duck, respectively.

What would you call a baby white-winged duck?

A baby white-winged duck is known as a duckling.

What do they eat?

Being omnivorous, the diet of a white-winged wood duck includes both plants and animals. They eat seeds, aquatic plants, rice, grains, as well as small fish, snails, insects, snakes, and frogs. Occasionally, they also feed on crustaceans and mollusks.

Are they dangerous?

Although ducks are thought to be harmless, white-winged ducks can be violent at times, showing strange and unusual behavior.

Would they make a good pet?

White-winged ducks are semiaquatic creatures and prefer to live in the wild. They need appropriate locations to thrive and survive. Apart from this, they might occasionally get violent. As they are wild birds, they should be left alone where they belong.

Did you know...

This species only feeds at night.

They become flightless for two consecutive weeks while molting.

They practice monogamy, that is, they only have one partner throughout their lives.

How is a white-winged duck different from a regular duck?

A white-winged duck prefers living in the wild, unlike a regular duck which is generally domesticated. A regular, or Pekin duck, is white in color whereas, the other has shades of black, white, and bluish-gray. Pekin ducks weigh around 10 lb (4.5 kg) and hence, are heavier than the other. Pekin ducks are listed as of Least Concern by the IUCN, unlike the white-winged duck which is highly Endangered.

Why are the white-winged ducks endangered?

The International Union For Conservation Of Nature, or IUCN, has marked the conservation status of a white-winged duck (Asarcornis scutulata) as Endangered. Loss of habitat due to human activities such as pollution and use of pesticides, loss of genetic variability, disturbance, hunting for eggs and chicks are some of the many reasons for their endangerment. The white-winged duck, endangered due to these reasons, will become extinct within the next 25 years if it is not conserved properly.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! For more relatable content, check out these Indian spot-billed duck facts and mottled duck facts pages.

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

Main image by Christiaan Luttenberg.

Second image by Ken Billington.

Written By
Moumita Dutta

<p>A content writer and editor with a passion for sports, Moumita has honed her skills in producing compelling match reports and stories about sporting heroes. She holds a degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from the Indian Institute of Social Welfare and Business Management, Calcutta University, alongside a postgraduate diploma in Sports Management.</p>

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