One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A small tree-nesting eastern Asian duck, the male of which has showy plumage with an orange ruff and orange saillike feathers on each side of the body.
Aix galericulata, family Anatidae
- ‘Waterfowl, such as the gaudy mandarin duck, no longer nest in its wetlands; fish have been driven upriver or out to sea, or have gone extinct.’
- ‘The various pairs of animals - deer, mandarin ducks, and dogs convey wishes for a long life and marriage.’
- ‘The four carved tiles directly below the hood depict pairs of magpies, phoenixes, mandarin ducks, and swallows, all symbols of harmonious matrimonial union.’
- ‘The mandarin duck represented faithfulness, the magpie good luck.’
- ‘Besides wild swans and cranes, some rare migratory birds such as mandarin duck, large and small swans, white swans, white neck cranes, and cray cranes can be seen there.’
mandarin duck/ˈmandərən ˌdək/
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