Rouens and Mallards (and how to tell the difference)

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by OldMcJohnny, Apr 26, 2016.

  1. OldMcJohnny

    OldMcJohnny Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 21, 2016
    Phoenix area, AZ
    Since I've been here I've noticed that there seems to be a lot of confusion on how to tell these ducks apart. I've seen people posting with what are clearly Mallards and saying they are Rouens and vice-versa. Would it be helpful to have a handy reference chart to be able to tell these breeds apart?
     
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  2. buff goose guy

    buff goose guy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 9, 2014
    Mississippi Y'all
    Most people go by the eyes stripe test, while this is right sometimes it is also sometimes wrong. Mallards can have multiple eye stripes, but that is usually seen if you got your ducks directly from a wild population. Most hatchery mallards have been domesticated to take a specific look with 1 eye stripe but you do get your occasions of some having multiple eye stripes here and there.

    Rouens are the same except it is rarer for them to have 1 eye stripe it does happen, so the eye stripe test is a good method to follow but it's not always going to be 100% accurate for everyone.

    The best way to tell is through development. The mallard will stay smaller but mature at about the same rate, if the mallard comes from a wild population it will probably mature faster. But at about a week or 2 there would be definite size difference between the 2 breeds.

    okay I hope that helped [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2016
  3. OldMcJohnny

    OldMcJohnny Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 21, 2016
    Phoenix area, AZ
    What you say is not wrong. Especially since Rouens and domesticated Mallards are both members of the same scientific species, Anas p. domesticus. They share common genes and have a certain amount of genetic admixture, which case result in mutations such as the ones that you describe. However, it should also be pointed out that the specific mutations that you describe, while they do occur, are statistically infrequent. The Eye Stripe test is largely accurate for ducks that have been purchased from a store or a hatchery, or are descended from those ducks. But, there are exceptions. Size is also another way to tell the difference. And in drakes, feathering is also subtly different as well.
     
  4. buff goose guy

    buff goose guy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mississippi Y'all
    Yes I agree I wasent saying it as occurrence was common, I was saying it as the occurrence 'can' happen :)
     

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