Harteman Wildfowl, presented by Jan Harteman

Muscovy duck (wild muscovy)

Cairina moschata

Muskuseend / Moschusente / Canard mosqué d'Amerique

 

The Muscovy duck (Cairina moschata) is a large duck native to MexicoCentral, and South America. Small wild and feral breeding populations have established themselves in the United States, particularly in the lower Rio Grande Valley of Texas, as well as in many other parts of North America, including southern Canada. Feral Muscovy ducks are found in New Zealand and have also been reported in parts of Europe. 

 

The domestic breed, Cairina moschata forma domestica, is commonly known in Spanish as the pato criollo ("creole duck"). They have been bred since pre-Columbian times by Native Americans and are heavier and less able to fly long distances than the wild subspecies. Their plumage color are also more variable. Other names for the domestic breed in Spanish are pato casero ("backyard duck") and pato mudo ("mute duck").

 

Wild-type muscovy ducks are rare in aviculture. A few wildfowl breeders intent to breed wild-type muscovy ducks, Cairina moschata. But what does a real wild muscovy duck look like? And do we really have a good wild-type population in aviculture at all? Read more here.

 

This species has an extremely large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). Despite the fact that the population trend appears to be decreasing, the decline is not believed to be sufficiently rapid to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size is very large, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern (IUCN, 2009).

 

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Above: Wild muscovy, female, in Dutch private collection

 

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Above: Wild muscovy, female, in Dutch private collection

 

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Above: Wild muscovy duck, at Sylvan Heights Bird Park, USA

 

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Above: Wild muscovy ducks, in Dutch private collection

 

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Above: Wild muscovy ducks in Poços de Caldas, MG, Brazil

 

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Above: Wild muscovy, female, in Poços de Caldas, MG, Brazil

 

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Above: Wild muscovy, male, in Poços de Caldas, MG, Brazil

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