Key Characteristics

They are an active breed. Breeding can be difficult as they will not all hatch with crests. It is a challenging breed but one which will always catch the eye of both public and in the show world the judges. 

  • As the name suggests this breed is distinguished by its crest. This is a group of feathers which is shaped like a ball and attached to the top of the head.
  • Crested ducks are of medium size with a smooth body.
  • The most popular colour is white but they can come in any of the accepted colour patterns of other breeds. 
  • There is also a miniature version with all the characteristics of the large but at the present it is not as popular.


  • The history of the breed is not completely sure but it is very old having been depicted in old paintings by Dutch artists such as Houendecouter. 
  • It is this connection where the subject is of old merchants with their collection of animals and birds which brings about the connection of their origin. 
  • The Dutch were often traders with the Dutch East Indies and today we still see evidence of crested ducks in the form of Bali ducks which look like Indian Runners with a small crest being farmed on the island of Bali.


Crested Ducks lay fairly well.

Did you know?

Breeding for the correct position of the crest can be difficult. It is important that the crest is positioned correctly on the top of the skull with the centre just behind the eyeline but not too far back on the neck. If the crest is on the neck it will not be attached firmly and will wobble about. It should be placed centrally when viewed from the front. Some specimens with an extra large crest are split into two or three groups and will not have the desired round shape.

Breed Societies

For more information visit the British Waterfowl Association