Wood Duck - Aix sponsa

Alternative names
Carolina Duck

A brightly coloured and distinctively patterned bird, it is considered to be one of the most stunning of all waterfowl and the male has particularly colourful breeding plumage. It is one of just a few ducks with strong claws that allow it to perch in trees. A relatively small duck, the Wood Duck has a crested head, a thin neck, short, broad wings and a large, rectangular tail.

Identification difficulty

Lakes and open water.

When to see it

Mainly recorded from late September to March.

Life History

Unlike most ducks, the wood duck nests in tree holes, and on leaving the nest the young may have to leap to the ground from great heights.

UK Status

This feral species is occasional but widespread in Britain.

VC55 Status

Status in Leicestershire and Rutland not known.

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Leicestershire & Rutland Map


Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015

UK Map