324. Merganser castor.
Merganser—a. diving Goose; from mergus + anser. Coined by Gesner, on account of the bird's size.
Ala ghaz aurdak, Yarkand.
Male 25" to 28" ; 2 3/4 to 3 1/4 lbs. Female 23" to 25"; 2 to 2 3/4 lbs. Legs orange. Bill blood-red, with black ridge. Crest, head, and neck glossy green. Above black and ashy. Breast and abdomen white. Wing-coverts orange.— Female: Ashy red head, W. Europe to Kamschatka, and in winter extends from S. Europe to China and Japan. Found in Himalayas in summer at 10,000 feet and upwards. Seven to twelve eggs (2.7 x 1.85), white. (J. 972. B. 1613.)
Also M. comatus. 25" to 27". Similar to M. castor. Distinguished by Salvadori as the Indian bird.
M. americanus. Similar to M. castor, but male has a conspicuous black band across wing. N. America, occasional in Bermudas.
M. squamatus. 23". Long occipital crest. Head above rufous, sides of head and throat paler. Sides of breast and flanks with two or three narrow crescentic bands on each feather. China.