Young Ducklings Grow Up in Late Summer


Photo by Juliet / 8-20-2014

For the first few months of their lives, mallard ducklings look the same regardless of sex.

By month two, as the ducklings become juveniles, their plumage starts to change.

Females’ feathers darken and their feet turn orange.

The males’ beaks turn yellow; females’ beaks turn black or occasionally orange.

Males’ feathers change a little later to silver-white along the body and the distinctive glossy green feathers on the head.

By month 14, both sexes are adults and ready to mate.

Mallards live on average 3 years, but some can live to be 20.



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