Muscovy duck


Muscovy duck (Cairina moschata)

The Muscovy duck (Cairina moschata) is a large duck from the family of water birds that includes ducks, geese, and swans (Anatidae).

Species name

Dutch name:
English name:
Muscovy duck
German name:
French name:
Canard musqué
Scientific name:
Cairina moschata

Scientific classification




Dark brownish black to black head, neck and entire upperparts and underparts, strongly glossed with green and purple iridescence. Tufts of feathers on head produce domed crown and hanging crest on nape. Bare swollen skin around eye and joining base of bill blackish, sometimes with reddish tinge. Primary feathers black , and secondaries glossed green, forming speculum behind white forewing( white shows on closed wing of resting bird); underwing-converts white, flight feathers black. Bill black on nail, across middle upper mandible and at base, where enlarged blackish knob extends along top of upper mandible to level with nostrils; rest of bill pale flesh pink. Legs and feet dark grey.  

Identical to male but substantially smaller, with no overlap in measurements or weights. Lacks lobe and bare area around eyes. 

Identical to adults but lacking gloss to feathers and thus looking duller and browner, some appearing dark brown, mottled paler brown. White on wing-converts acquired first year, but continues to increase in extend during first year, but continues to increase in extent during second year and perhaps subsequently.

Standard Measurements

Body Length (cm):
The male (drake) of the Muscovy duck measures approximately 74-78 centimeters. The female measures approximately 74-78 centimeters.
Body Weight (grams):
The male will weight about 1270-3000 gram. The female will weight about 1270-3000 gram.
The weight is notoriously variable and can only be used as indication!

Muscovies prefer wetlands near forested areas and nest in tree cavities or nest boxes.

The female Muscovy duck usually lays from 7-11 white eggs and incubates them for 35 days.

Artificial incubating:

The ideal relative humidity for incubating most waterfowl eggs is 55% (ground nesters) and 40% (cavity nesters). The temperature is usually 37.4°C. Set ventilation as recommended by the incubator manufacturer. Eggs must be turned, either automatically or by hand, a minimum of 4 times a day. As the duckling develops there is a loss of water from the egg and the air sac gets bigger. In normal development of an egg with a 35 days incubation, the air sac occupies about a third of it three days earlier. Cleanliness is vital and ideally eggs should be moved to a separate hatcher at this point, where the humidity should be increased to 65% and even higher once they have pipped internally.

Bird banding:
Recommended closed leg band ring size for the Muscovy duck is 14 mm.
The leg band ring can only be applied on a young large duck at around 14 days old.

It doesn't matter what leg that you band, but it's good to have a consistent system.
Suggested: Left leg = Female, Right leg = Male
Maintenance food:
Lundi Regular
Lundi Regular
Lundi Regular
Lundi Regular
Lundi Regular

Lundi Regular with a protein content of 20%, valuable Spirulina and high-quality by-products is optimally balanced in its composition maintenance food for water ornamental fowl of all kinds. Especially green teal and Whistling ducks that are not dependent on a very high protein content, are well supplied.

Lundi Regular contains all the minerals and vitamins in full form that are important for the animals. Therefore also suitable as breeding food.

Lundi Premium
Lundi Premium
Lundi Premium
Lundi Premium
Lundi Premium

Floating full food for all sea ducks, green ducks, eider ducks and geese, especially in the moulting and breeding phase ideally suited. Packed with wholesome raw materials, natural vitamins and trace elements, this performance food with a protein content of 30% forms the basis for lifelong vitality.

Photos of the Muscovy duck