Association for Promotion of Belgian Poultry Breeds


Large fowl





|Termonde duck    |Forest duck    |Huttegem duck    |Merchtem duck    |Semois duck   
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Semois duck

Semois drake


Origin : Data on this breed are very scarce. The first very short references on this breed go back to early twentieth century. The late Etienne Brandt was the big promoter of this duck. The first standard of the Semois appeared in his book ‘Study on Chickens and Waterfowl’, which he wrote in 1971 with Prof. Dr. A. Willems, DVM. What he described then as a Semois was in the end nothing else but a large Call duck with a too long bill. In 1990, a few years before his death, he rejected the original standard and published a new one. One the origin of this breed is very little known but that it originates from the valley of the Semois River.

Characteristics : The Semois is a very active little duck with little utility qualities. It is usually kept as an ornamental duck and sometimes to sit on eggs of wild waterfowl species. The ducks lay a nice number of rather big greenish eggs which they brood themselves. The ducklings grow up fast and without any problems.

Appearance : The Semois looks a lot like a mallard considering its shape and size. The body is elongated and rather flattened. They weigh little above one kilo. The head has a flat front and skull and the cheeks are not prominent. The bill is rather long compared to the body length and should be yellow. Birds with orange bills should be removed from breeding stock. The legs are orange and medium in length. The underline of the body should stay above the heels, which implements that the abdomen should not be deep. There is also a crested variety of the Semois.

Varieties : The Semois is always white with as little yellow as possible.

State : Very rare. Mostly seen in the Southern French-speaking part of Belgium and sporadically in the North. Unknown in other countries. Crested Semois are extremely rare.