Abundant throughout North America, the Mallard is one of the continent's most well-known and best-loved species of wild duck. The plumage of Mallards is instantly recognizable. The male, or drake, has a bright green head, ochre yellow bill, and brown chest. He bear patches (known as “specula”) of indigo blue on its greyish, brown wings. On the other hand, the female, or hen, bears mottled brown and white plumage, sharing with the drake a striking indigo speculum decorating the upper back edge of each wing. Mallard mating pairs travel together from their wintering grounds to their home breeding territory in early spring. Mallard hens will lay an egg a day for up to 12 days, incubating the eggs for about a month. Within one day of hatching, the mother leads her ducklings to the safety of nearby water. The ducklings will remain with their mother for approximately two months, until they learn to fly and can begin the age-old lifecycle of migrating, selecting a mate and breeding.
Finish specimen with colour
Weight (g) 0.5
Face value 25 cents
Artist Trevor Tennant (reverse), Susanna Blunt (obverse)