Rouens are a calm and docile domesticated duck breed that was bred as a meat duck. The Zoo’s Rouens can
be found in the lower (domestic) pond in the Farmyard. When a Mallard flies into this pond and is next to a Rouen, it provides a great opportunity to compare the two different ducks.


They look like large Mallard ducks with similar coloration, but Rouens weigh 6-10 lbs. compared to the 2-3 lbs. of the Mallard. The male (drake) Rouens also have the green head and neck with a white line just like a male (drake) Mallard, but the Rouens tend to have a darker body than the wild Mallards. Both genders of the Rouens also have the iridescent blue plumage on the side of their wings just like the Mallard. Recently, new colors have been bred into the Rouens such as black, blue, fawn and pastel color varieties. There are two types of Rouens. The standard is massive and weighs 8-10 lbs. with a large, blocky body. The production type has a trimmer body, is more upright, and weighs about 2 lbs. less than the standard Rouen.


Rouens are a domesticated duck breed that is typically found in and around ponds and shallow streams.


Rouen ducks are named after a town in north central France. They were bred several hundred years ago in France from the wild Mallard.


Omnivores. Rouens eat mostly plant matter, but will also eat insects, worms, snails, slugs, frogs and small shellfish. At the Zoo, they are fed a strict diet, so please do not feed them.

Life Span: 

17 years.

Family Life: 

The Rouen females (ducks) are so massive that they sometimes break their eggs when they incubates them, and that is why many famers pull the laid eggs. They are poor egg layers only laying 35-125 eggs/year. Rouens are slow growers and take about 1.5 years to reach full size.


Under the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy, they are listed as a "Watch" duck breed.