Sometimes referred to simply as Rosy bills, this peaceful duck is native to South America from southern Brazil south into Argentina and Chile. They are named for the drakes large, rosy colored bill that has a knob at the base. Commonly kept in aviaries,
Rosy bills belong to the waterfowl tribe, known as the diving ducks. They are closely related to Europe's Red-crested Pochard, whom they may hybridize with in captivity. There is no eclipse plumage in drakes. Hens are similar to other diving duck hens, mostly brown and her face will become white in color as she ages.
A great duck for a mixed collection, Rosy bills get along great with other species, but can be somewhat aggressive of territory. Be sure to allow enough room for each pair to establish their own areas. They are Winter hardy as long as they have a nice dry shelter to escape the elements. Being a diving duck,
Rosy bills prefer to have a pond or a deep watering pan so they can submerge themselves. They will often spend the night in the water.
Rosy bills are very easy to propagate in aviaries.
The hens will use nest boxes (we keep several just in
case), but prefer to nest on the ground among
vegetation and lines the nest with down. The breeding
season begins around the middle of May and the hens
will lay a clutch of 10 to 14 eggs that are incubated
for about 27 days. Rosy bill hens do make great
The ducklings are easy to raise and are interesting
to watch as they try to imitate every thing mother
does! The drakes will gain their adult plumage the
first years, but hens may not start laying until they
Rosy bills will do well in a small aviary that is
well planted. If you are planning a mixed collection,
you will want a bigger aviary of course, to allow each
species its own breeding territory. I would have to
recommend this wonderful duck to the beginner, their
almost friendly disposition makes them great for those
who want a calm duck for their aviaries.
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Rosy bill Drake
Rosy bill Hen
Rosy bill Drake