To get everyone ready for my "Iron Chef Challenge" which starts this Friday and features Duck as the themed ingredient. I realize duck may not be a common entree at your house but perhaps if you knew a little more about ducks in general it would peak your interest.
The most common breed of Duck is the White Pekin.
Ducks keep clean by preening themselves with their beaks, which they do often. They also line their nests with feathers plucked from their chest. Ever hear the saying, "like water off a duck's back"? Ducks' feathers are waterproof. There is a special gland that produces oil on their back near the tail that spreads and covers the outer coat of feathers. Beneath this waterproof layer are fluffy and soft feathers to keep the duck warm.
Ducks' feet have no nerves or blood vessels. This means ducks never feel the cold, even if they swim in icy cold water. Ducks have webbed feet, which act like paddles. Another item to note is that a duck has three eyelids, this helps them to see underwater. A male duck is called a drake, a female is called a hen, and babies are called ducklings.
All of the Peking ducks in the United States are descendants from ducks from China and imported to Long Island, New York in 1873. Today the state of Indiana ranks 1st in Duck Production.