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Mandarin, Aix galericulata


Short description of Aix galericulata, Mandarin

The drake mandarin is among the most spectacular of all the ducks, with orange 'sails' on the back, long orange whiskers, double white band on the breast sides and conspicuous long white crescent extending backwards from above the eye. Females and young birds closely resemble Aix sponsa in the same plumage, but have a long tapering white line behind the eye. Drakes are more dull coloured during the moult in late summer than earlier in the year.

Description of Aix galericulata, Mandarin status in GB

Mandarins are well established as breeding birds in a large area of southeast England, centred on Surrey, and at scattered locations elsewhere in GB.  Dispersing individuals or those recently escaped from captivity may be seen away from breeding locations.

Habitat summary: Aix galericulata, Mandarin

Breeding habitat contains secluded lakes or slow-flowing water and woodland with large tree-holes.   Non-breeding birds also occur on more open sites such as larger lakes and reservoirs. 

Overview table

Environment: Terrestrial and Freshwater
Species status: Non-Native
Native range: Russian Far East, China, Eastern Asia, Kazan-retto, Nansei-shoto, Ogasawara-shoto, North Korea, South Korea, Russia Central, Russia East, Russia North, Russia Northwest, Russia South, Taiwan
Functional type: Herbivore
Status in England: Non-Native
Status in Scotland: Non-Native
Status in Wales: Non-Native
Location of first record: Woburn Park
Date of first record: 1904

Distribution map

Map of the UK with areas shaded to show the UK distribution of Mandarin

GB Distribution from NBN Atlas

Author's name:

John Marchant

Last updated:

September 23rd 2016

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