834. Snow Goose.
Chen hyperboreus, (Pallas), Spic. Zool. vi. p. 20 (1767) ; (Naum.), xi p. 213, Taf. 381 ; (Gould), B. of E. v. pl. 346 ; Dresser, vi. p. 413, pl. 417, fig. 1 ; Salvadori, Cat. B. Br. Mus. xxvii. p. 84 ; Tacz. P. O. Sib. O. p. 1086 ; Saunders, p. 405 ; Lilford, vii. p. 66, pl. 24 ; Ridgway, p. 115 ; C. albatus (Cassin), Proc. Ac. Philad, 1856, p. 41 ; Dresser, vi. p. 409, pl. 417, fig. 2.
Bieloi Gus, Russ. ; Hynka, Kamchatk. ; Haku-gan, Jap.
Ad. (N. America). Entire plumage pure white, except that the primaries are dark ash-grey at the base, otherwise black, and the spurious wing ash- grey ; legs and beak red, tooth white ; iris brown. Culmen 2.50, wing 17.0, tail 6.0, tarsus 3.0 inch. The young bird is brownish grey above, with dark centres to the wing-coverts and dorsal feathers ; under parts greyish white ; bill blackish with a reddish tinge ; legs plumbeous tinged with yellowish red.
Hab. Arctic North America, in winter ranging south to the Gulf of Mexico ; of somewhat rare occurrence in Kamchatka and North-east Siberia, wintering in Japan ; a straggler to Britain, Holland, Germany, Scandinavia, and North Russia.
Is said to be wary and shy ; its flight is strong and steady, and on land it walks with ease. On the sea-shore it feeds on shell-fish, fry, and marine plants, but when inland chiefly on vegetable matter. It breeds in the high north of America, most numerously on the Arctic barren grounds, near lakes, the nest being a hollow in the ground well lined with down. The eggs, usually 5 in number, are white, and measure about 3.4 by 2.2. Chen albescens is merely a small form of the present species, and is now not generally looked on as even subspecifically separable.
834. Chen hyperboreus
834. Snow Goose.