1580. Anser albifrons.
The White-fronted Goose.
Branta albifrons, Scop. Ann. I. Hist. Nat. p. 69 (1769). Anser albifrons, Adams, P. Z. S. 1858, p. 509; Jerdon, B. I. iii, p. 780; Hume, Cat. no. 947 ; id. S. F. viii, p. 421; Hume & Marsh. Game B. iii, p. 73, pl.; Reid, S. F. x, p. 78; Barnes, Birds Bom. p. 395; Lester, Jour. Bom. N. H. Soc. vii, p. 553; Salvadori, Cat. B. M. xxvii, p. 92 ; Baiter, Jour. Bom. N. H. Soc. xi, pl. ii. Anser erythropus, apud Flem. Brit. An. p. 127 (1828); Hume, S. F. i, p. 259 ; nec Linn.
Coloration. A white frontal band extending across the lores to the gape, and sometimes to the chin; head, neck, and upper surface dark brown, darker and ashy posteriorly and blackish on the border of the frontal band ; wing-coverts greyer; feathers of upper back, scapulars, tertiaries, and some of the coverts pale-tipped; greater coverts with broad white edges, forming a white bar; primaries dark grey with blackish ends, secondaries black; breast and abdomen whity-brown, more or less blotched with black, sometimes black almost throughout; sides of breast brown, with pale tips to the feathers ; vent, lower flanks, and upper and under tail-coverts white; tail-feathers dark ashy brown, with white edges and tips, broadest on the outer feathers.
In young birds the white on the forehead is brownish or wanting, and there is no black on the underparts.
Bill pale livid fleshy, nail whitish ; irides pale brown; legs and feet bright orange (Hume).
Length 27 ; tail 4.5 ; wing 15.5 ; tarsus 2.5 ; bill from gape 2.
Distribution. Throughout the Palaearctic region, breeding in the far North, and migrating in winter to the Mediterranean, Egypt, where this species is common, the Caspian, and China. This Goose is a rare cold-weather visitor to the Punjab, Sind, Cutch, Rohil-khand, and Oudh, usually occurring on rivers, singly or in parties of two or three. 1 saw single geese of a small dark species, probably the present, swimming on the Indus near Sehwan, as late as the first week in April. Hume was informed by Col. Graham that A. albifrons is found throughout Assam ; and Oates has recently ascertained that it has been shot in Upper Burma.