East Indies Duck: Origin, Characteristics & Purpose

East Indies duck is a domestic breed that is also known as black East Indies duck. The kind looks adorable, and it has some striking appearance.

However, they are among the rarest breed of ducks to be domesticated by people, and they are mainly used for exhibition, ornamental purposes as well as kept as pets.

In this article, you will learn more about the history and origin, physical characteristics, uses and health issues affecting the breed of duck.

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History & Origin of East Indies Duck

The duck breed originated from the United States of America at around the 16th Century. The name does not imply that it was developed in South East Asia.

The duck breed is among the oldest kinds to be developed in the USA, and the name given to the duck breed is mainly for marketing.

There is still a lot of argument about the exact origin of the breed since some people believe that the black color gene originated from the American black duck and others say from the Northern Mallard sport duck.

Despite these arguments, the duck breed is still widespread across Europe as many poultry fanciers prefer them for ornamental and exhibition purposes.

The duck breeds were admitted to British Standards of perfection in 1865 while in American Poultry Association in 1874.

East Indies Duck Characteristics

Size and Weight

The duck breed is small in format with a similar appearance to Cayuga duck and Shetland duck though they are much smaller.

The average weight of a mature duck is about 450 to 700 grams while the drake weighs about 700 to 900 grams.

Behavior and Temperament

The birds are quiet and shy. They are suitable to be breed with non-aggressive poultry breeds on the farm. The research shows that they are more bashful than call ducks.

Climate Tolerance

The ducks are hardy and robust. They can survive in any weather climate without being affected adversely. However, they tend to do well in the native weather climate.

Breed Class

The ducks belong to the bantam class which implies that they can fly well due to their small body size. They are not suitable for breeding in urban areas since they can get lost easily.

Color Variety

The ducks have black feathers, legs, and beaks. The color of feathers tend to change with age from black to grey, and this is considered to be healthy.

Growth Rate

The birds have a relatively faster growth rate, and they can quickly increase the number of birds on the farm; hence the reason why they are kept for commercial production of ornaments.

Purpose of the Duck Breed

The black East Indies are kept for ornaments purpose. A lot of people raise them as pets and others for the exhibition. The popularity of the birds has been increasing recently due to the demand for ornaments.

The productivity rate in terms of egg production is low since they tend to lay about 40 to 100 eggs per year. The color of the eggs usually varies depending on the season (light gray to blue). An egg weighs about 55grams.

Health Issues of the Duck Breed

As mentioned earlier, the duck breeds are hardy and robust. They are known to be resistant to common poultry diseases and parasites like mites, lice, fleas, etc.

It is recommended to provide sufficient clean and freshwater for them aside from nutritious feeds — the water helps to prevent wet diseases from the ducks.

East Indies Duck Pictures

Check out the image and try to identify other hidden characteristics of the duck breeds on your own. The picture help to portray how a bird looks like from the feathers, legs, and beaks.

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