Saturday, 15 August 2009

Goosander (Mergus merganser)

OTHER NAMES: Common Merganser
Latin Etymology: Mergus (bird named by Pliny etc) merganser ("waterbird goose")

Adult male (top) and female (below) Goosander (subspecies M. m. merganser) at Pitsford Reservoir, Northants - March 2011

Local Name (Japan): Kawa-aisa (カワアイサ) - "River Merganser"
Featured Subspecies: Mergus merganser merganser
Weight: 1300-1700g
Length: 58-72cm
Wingspan: 78-97cm
UK GREEN LIST / IUCN Red List: Least Concern

One of the "saw bills" - ducks with serrated beaks which they use for catching fish as well as other aquatic animals. Though not especially common as a breeding species, it arrives in greater numbers from the continent in the Winter where they can be found on freshwater lakes.  They can also be seen at the coast at some parts of the year.  Otherwise it is confined to the North and Wales for the most part during breeding.

Related Species:
Order: Anseriformes
Family: Anatidae
Genus: Mergus
Subspecies: M. m. merganser, M. m. comatus, M. m. americanus  

- Sighting Locations -
UNITED KINGDOM - Scarce breeding species (3,100-3,800 pairs) and scarce Wintering species (12,000 pairs)
JAPAN - Abundant resident - one of the most common urban birds.
 - TOKYO/HOKKAIDO 2014 TRIP: A pair seen in Akkeshi

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