Birds – The European Scoter

(O. Nigra), found throughout the northern portions of the Eastern Hemisphere, has the male uniform black, with the bill black, marked with a yellow or orange spot in front of the basal knob. Similar to this, but with the nail of the bill arched and strongly hooked, is the American Scoter (O. Americana), which ranges over much of North America, breeding in Labrador and the northern interior, and migrating on the Atlantic coast as far south as Virginia, on the Great Lakes, and off California. With about the same range is the Surf Scoter (O. Perspicillata), which may be known by the pure white patch on the forehead and on the hind neck, the plumage otherwise being black. The three remaining species — the Velvet Scoter (O. Fusca), White-winged Scoter (O. deglandi), and the Kamchatkan Scoter (O. Stejnegeri) — all have a white mark on the wing and differ among themselves in only minor particulars.