I say you should go with the mandarin ducks! They are very beautiful (as are wood ducks) I believe the orange they have makes them above and beyond amazing. Plus, the name is so much better...random fact, did you know that if there are too many males in their territory, a male mandie can turn itself into a female! I'm pretty sure this doesn't happen in captivity though!
I believe it can be done. Just haven't heard of a bird changing reproductive organs and being able to produce fertile offspring? I know that if a female mandarins ovaries are damaged or for some reason there is a hormone imbalance she can produce testosterone and look like a male. Read something about the damaged ovary sometimes "changing" into a teste but have no idea if she, i mean it can reproduce?
Let me rephrase that, I had it backwards and completely wrong, according to the Wildlife Fact File (which is a lagitamit resource, they have made a sheet for every bird breed, mammal breed, and reptile breed, etc.) "The female mandarin duck has only one working ovary. If it fails, the other ovary develops into a male sex organ and the bird becomes a non-breeding male." This information can also be found in the Aa Field Guide to the Birds of Britain. If that is still not proof enough you can simply go to: http://www.utahbirds.org/featarts/2004/MandarinDuck3.htm
It is argued upon whether or not the newly formed male can reproduce or not. Sorry for telling the story wrong in the first place..
By the way, why would you change your mind and say you knew they could change gender but earlier you were so sure it couldn't happen? You're being a bit confusing..don't you think?
I was originally questioning your statement that males can "willingly" change sex to match the needs of the flock. I wasn't questioning weather a female can change due to disease or other problems.
Really i apologize if you feel like i attacked your post. I think it would be cool if the males could change and was curious on the matter.
EDITED TO ADD: i can see where it gets confusing when i say in my original post about me being in disbelief, the later saying "i believe it can be done"
and again the being in disbelief was over the specific male comment and the i believe it can be done was directed toward ducks_rcool's chicken comment and the information i gave on the hens.
I didn't mean to be rude either, I just wanted to make sure I could actually save myself from messing up (I should have went back and read!) and prove that it can be done because I think they are such amazing creatures for being able to do that!