Muscovy Duck Appearance
The most recognizable trait of Muscovy ducks is the bumpy black or red skin growths on their faces, known as caruncles. Additional attributes include a graceful bill that slopes up the forehead, black plumage with white markings, and enlarged talons with sharp claws. Males can grow to almost three feet in length and weigh fifteen pounds, while females tend to be shorter and weigh only eight pounds. Additionally, the bodies of these big birds can take on purple or greenish hues when light reflects from their feathers.
In the United States, Muscovy ducks are found across Florida, as well as south Texas near the Rio Grande Valley. They generally live in forested wetlands and can be seen around ponds, swamps, and rivers. Deforestation has forced these tree-nesting birds to seek shelter within the confines of private properties. Houses in the Southern U.S. near lagoons or other bodies of water may encounter property damage as the result of these pests foraging for acorns, insects, and fruit. Due to their long necks and large bodies, the Muscovy duck often may look like a goose while flying or seen from afar.
Issues with Muscovy Ducks
Muscovy ducks are aggressive and have been known to bite while interacting with humans. Furthermore, they are capable of passing bird flu to people, a disease that carries a 60 percent mortality rate. Traveling in flocks, the pests are not particularly noisy, but their presence can also take away from the serenity of a yard. Droppings left behind by these nuisances can add up quickly, causing issues while mowing the lawn or doing other yard work. It's generally best to keep away from Muscovy duck infestations and leave their removal up to the professionals at Critter Control.