The Cayuga was developed from the wild Black Duck breed near Lake Cayuga in New York state. This breed is one of the few duck breeds originating in the United States. Before the arrival of the Pekin breed, the Cayuga was the bird of choice for meat production in the Northeast. Once the Pekin arrived with its white feathers and cleaner appearing carcass, the Cayuga quickly lost its appeal. The Cayuga remains a very hardy duck. They lay approximately 130-180 large grey-black eggs a year. Many of their eggs have varying degrees of grey in the shell color, and on rare occasions, they will lay a pure black egg. Mature adults weigh four to six pounds. They have a brilliant “beetle” green sheen to their feathers, which is especially evident on the male’s head. As they age, however, Cayuga becomes almost all white. This changing of colors occurs much quicker in females than males. Also, their black legs turn more orangish in color as they age. Ducklings have dark brown down feathers and black beaks, legs, and feet.