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The World's Most Colorful Duck

The animal kingdom is filled with colorful creatures, but Thinking Color has found one animal that just might be more colorful than the rest. The banks of freshwater bodies in eastern China and southern Japan are home to the mandarin duck.


Over years of evolution the mandarin duck has developed a myriad of colorful patterns to help attract mates. This process is especially important to this particular species of duck since mandarin ducks, unlike many other species of animals, choose a life long partner.


This propensity for long term coupling has made the mandarin duck a cultural symbol in China. There is a colloquial saying in chinese that a couple is as happy as “two mandarin ducks playing in water”. Mandarin ducks are also fixtures at weddings in China and are thought to bring good luck to the couple. 

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