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Photography Tips about Mandarin Duck in Wuyuan

Wuyuan, a small county in the northeast of Jiangxi, is praised to be the Most Beautiful Countryside in China. People know Wuyuan for its unparalleled idyllic scenery, but rare of them know that Wuyuan is the largest wintering habitat for the wild Mandarin Duck. As a famous ornamental bird in China, the Mandarin Duck is regarded as a symbol of love for being in pairs usually. It is often found in the ancient Chinese literature and the myths and used to describe the love between men and women.

Mandarin Duck

In China, we call it Yuanyang, which is a compound word. The word Yuan is the male Mandarin Duck and the word Yang is female Mandarin Duck. It is believed that the Mandarin Duck is the most beautiful duck in the world. Here the article would show you some photography tips about the Mandarin Duck in Wuyuan.  

About the Mandarin Duck

Mandarin Duck (Aix Galericulata): Known scientifically as Aix Galericulata, the Mandarin Duck is the close relative of the North American Wood Duck. It owns a medium figure with a length of 38cm to 45cm and a weight of 0.5kg. It is easy to tell the difference between the male duck and the female duck from the color. The male Mandarin Duck owns a very distinctive color pattern, which includes the red beak, orange sails and an iridescent crest, while the female Mandarin Duck owns the black beak and grey- brown appearance.

The Mandarin Duck is native to many parts of eastern Asia, particularly eastern Asia, but small populations of them can now be found in many other parts of the world as well, like Europe and North America, the areas that are similar to their indigenous habitat. During the breeding period, the Mandarin Duck's main inhabits are near the bodies of water, such as rivers, lakes, ponds, reed marshes and paddy fields of mountain forests. And they typically prefer to settle in large open lakes, rivers and swamps in winter. The Mandarin Duck usually feeds on small fish and the various vegetation and insects.

Mandarin Duck

The Mandarin Duck is one of the traditional export birds in China. There used to be a large population in China, and a large number of living birds were hunted every year for the supply of the domestic zoos and the export. Before 1975, no matter in the spring of Changbaishan or the wintering habitat in the south, it could often encounter the big migratory groups with 40 to 50 ducks. However, it is very rare to catch the scene now. Due to the deforestation and illegal hunting, the population and the species of Mandarin Duck is decline. According to the survey, the breeding population of Mandarin Duck in China is only 1500-2000 pairs now, which was listed as one of the world's endangered birds and a national second-class key protected bird.

When is the Migratory Time of the Mandarin Duck

The Mandarin Duck is the migratory bird. At the end of March and the beginning of April, they move to the northeast breeding ground successively, and leave the breeding ground at the end of September to the beginning of October. During the migration, they usually fly as the small groups, often 7 to 10 in one groups. Sometimes, they would also fly in large groups with 50 ducks. In Guizhou, Taiwan and other places, there are also some Mandarin Ducks that do not migrate, which are the resident birds.

Mandarin Duck

Where to Shoot the Mandarin Duck

Yuanyang Lake Scenic Area, located in Fuchun Town, is on the west part of Wuyuan, which is only 179km north of the tourist attraction Mt. Huangshan. In the early 1980s, the good ecological environment around the reservoir attracted a large number of Mandarin Ducks to live here for the winter, so it was gradually renamed as Mandarin Duck Lake (also called Yuanyang Lake) after 1986. In 1997, Yuanyang Lake was designated as Provincial Nature Reserve.

The natural vegetation in the lake area is mainly evergreen broad-leaved forest and Masson pine. There are 24 families and 185 species of woody plants, whichand the coveringage area is over 95%. The good natural environment has attracted a large number of animals to inhabit and reproduce here. According to preliminary statistics, there are 89 species of animals in the lake area, including 17 species of mammals, 22 species of reptiles and amphibians, and 50 species of birds. Birds are further divided into 14 species of water birds and 36 species of forest birds, with mandarin ducks in the majority, up to more than 2,000 pairs, accounting for 2/3 of the number of known wild mandarin ducks in the world, which makes Yuanyang Lake to be the largest wintering habitat in Asia and even in the world.

Mandarin Duck

Since 1986, more than 2,000 pairs of Mandarin Ducks gather here every year for the winter. During the daytime, the pairs of Mandarin Ducks inhabit in the river bend in groups, which seems to be the flowers in full bloom with their red beak and green feathers. They are inseparable, paddling in the water for food or soaring in the sky. In the evening, the pairs of Mandarin Ducks snuggle in the lakeside and the woods, whispering the love talk, carefree and happy.

Photography Tips for the Mandarin Duck

Use different perspective

It is the basic request to shoot the birds with accurate focus, clear image and obvious features. So the photographers could choose the different perspective to show the object's features.

Catch the moment of flying

Flying is the most representative characteristic of birds, especially the moment that the birds fly from the water.

Mandarin Duck

Use the correct lens to show the color and details

The Mandarin Duck is famous for its colorful appearance, so the close-up view is the best way to show the details and different colors in the body.

Use the slow shutter to show the movement

The slow shut is the most ideal way to show the movement, but it is also a difficult skill to control. So it is important to lean the active pattern and speed of the Mandarin Duck. The speed of slow shut is the key to a good photo.

Plan a Photography Tour to Wuyuan

Due to the convenient transportation, it is easy to plan a trip to Yuanyang Lake. It is recommended to combine it with the visit of Mt. Huangshan and Wuyuan if you would come in the winter. If you were interested in bird photography, our travel consultant would be pleased to help you plan a trip.