Wilson, Alexander, 1766-1813. / American ornithology; or The natural history of the birds of the United States
Species 14. Anas perspicillata. Black, or surf duck, pp. -327
ASPECIES 14. aNaS PERSPICILL T.9. BLACK, OR SURF DUCK. [Plate LXVII.- Fig. 1.1 1e grande Macreuse de la Baye de Hudson, BRISS. VI, p. 4q25, 30. -La JMacreuse a large bec, BUFF. ix, p. 244.-Pl. Ent. 995.-- EWD. P1. 155.--LATI-. Syn. iir, p. 479,--Phil. Trans. LXII, p 417.--PEALE'S Museums, No. 2788.* THIs Duck is peculiar to America, and altogether confined to the shores and bays of the sea, particularly where the waves roll over the sandy beach. Their food consists principally of those small bivalve shell fish already described, spout fish, and others that lie in the sand near its surface. For these they dive almost constantly, both in the sandy bays and aimidst the tumbl- ing surf. They seldom or never visit the salt marshes. They continue on our shores during the winter; and leave us early in May for their breeding places in the nr h. Their skins are remarkably strong, and their flesh coarse, tasting of fish. They are shy birds, not easily approached, and are common in win- ter along the whole coast from the river St. Lawrence to Flo- rida. The length of this species is twenty inches, extent thirty-two inches; the bill is yellowish red, elevated at the base, and mark- ed on the side of the upper mandible with a large square patch of black, preceded by another space of a pearl colour; the part of the bill thus marked swells or projects considerably from the common surface; the nostrils are large and pervious; the sides of the bill broadly serrated or toothed; both mandibles are fur- nished with a nail at the extremity; irides white, or very pale *.dnasperspicillata, GMEL. SySt. I, p. 524, No. 25.-lad, Orn. p' 847, No, 4 -PEALE'S Museum, No. 2789, female.
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