: As the name suggests the Merchtem duck originates from the region of
Merchtem, a village nearby Brussels that was famous a century ago for
its poultry industry for the Brussels market. The exact origin of the
Merchtem duck is unknown but it is supposed that the British Aylesbury
played an important role in the pedigree of the Merchtem. Another
possible ancestor of the Merchtem that is often mentioned, is the
: The Merchtem really is a utility duck. With its 3,5 kg it is one of
the heavy duck breeds but the combination with the tenderness and the
quality of the meat still rank this duck high on the list of good table
ducks. Besides a nice amount of meat the Merchtem also produces a large
number of heavy eggs which they unfortunately not often brood
themselves. The duck starts laying early in spring and usually continues
until the fall.
: The Merchtem is a large meaty duck with a horizontal carriage and
without any sign of keel. The plumage is pure white without any yellow.
The bill is pinkish white like in the Aylesbury. The absence of yellow
pigment in the bill was considered a sign of superior meat qualities.
Thatís why all Belgian breeds that were kept for table purposes have
white skin, white fat and white shanks (the last of course not in
: Merchtem ducks are always pure white with a bluish sheen.
: Very rare to endangered. This breed is only kept by a handful of
breeders in the Northern Dutch-speaking part of Belgium. Very rare in
the South. Sporadically found in France by the name of Bourbourg duck.
Unknown in other countries.