Help with Strange Mandarin Duckling Color?!


5 Years
Sep 17, 2014
Conroe, TX
Hello everyone!
I just got two Mandarin ducklings that are about a month old. I've raised them in the past but have never had a Mandarin Duckling with this color down! Its marking are normal, as far as patterns go, but it has almost white down where the yellow would normaly be! The sibling to this guy has the typical color of a normal Mandarin duckling, and the parents appeared normal as well. Ive looked all over the internet and have yet to see a Mandarin Duckling with similar coloration. Hoping someone can shed some light on this strange duckling! I will post photos as soon as I figure out how that works on this forum!


They were only in this tiny tank for transport! They are now in their own clean pen with a small pond and fountain :)
Never seen one like that, either! And I used to raise Mandarins back at my old zoo. It's definitely not a blonde, but maybe it's another color variation? It'll be interesting to see what it looks like grown up.
Thanks for the reply! Glad I'm not the only one that has never seen this! I'm wondering if this could be a new mutation as well... or just an odd colored duckling. I forgot to mention, this chick had to be pulled out of its shell and was lifeless the first 8 or so hours after hatching...the breeder went to remove him from the incubator, thinking that he had she picked him up, he let out a little squeal! He was not very active the first few days after hatching, but quickly started acting like a typical Mandarin. It's much smaller than its sibling but otherwise just as active and healthy. It's just starting to get some breast feathers, and to me, it looks like there may be subtle differences....hard to be sure since the sibling has much more feathers already in. Their beaks and feet are different as well. The duckling in question has almost no pink on its beak and its feet are more blue/gray. I think this is going to be a test of patience. ..which I'm not very good at!
I've posted a few more pictures of the normal duckling and the oddball. The strange one seems to be lacking all yellow pigments. ..we call it axanthic in the reptile world. The best example of axanthic I can think of in birds would be the whiteface mutation in Cockatiels...I'm know there are many more but that's just what came to mind.
So strange and interesting! I so want to see this bird grown up (as I'm sure you do as well). The lack of pinkish color on the bill could just be an indication the other one is a male and this oddball is a female. Do you know the sexes?
Yes, It's killing me not knowing why this duckling is different! Waiting for this bird to molt is going to seem endless lol! Very exciting though :)! They hatched on August 27-28th so they are just under a month old. I think a bit too early to make a call on what sex they are.... Although it has been years since I've had Mandarins, maybe someone more experienced than myself can tell what they are. The normal looking one does seem to have quite a bit of color in its bill for being so young...perhaps a male?

Also, These are the first chicks out of a group of 5 adults. The group is unrelated, but no idea if they are split for any mutations.
Whatever it is, it's cute! <3 Whoa, what if it IS a new mutation? Just imagine the possibilities!
Keep us posted as the feathers come in! Good thing in this case that ducks grow so fast--you will be able to tell fairly soon what he/she is going to look like!
The males do start getting the reddish bills quite early, right around this age. So, that would be my guess that he is a male and the other a female. :)

But yes, definitely come back and update us as their feathers come in!

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom