Male – The male Scaly-sided Merganser has a black head and neck with a glossy green sheen, a distinctive long wispy crest, a thin red beak, eyes are dark brown, the fore-neck, breast and under-parts are white, the flanks, vent and rump have whitish feathers with dark grey edgings, the mantle, hind-neck are blackish, the wings are dark grey with white secondaries and greater coverts, and legs and feet are red.
Female – The female has a brown head and upper neck with a wispy crest, a thin reddish beak, dark eyes, greyish back, and whitish under-sides, the lower neck, flanks, and upper-tail have whitish feathers with dark grey edgings, and the legs and feet are reddish.
Eclipse – The male in eclipse plumage is similar to the female but retains the white in its upper-wing and scaling on sides of body.
Size: – Typical Adult is 20-23 inches.
Food: – Mainly aquatic invertebrates, and small fish.
Habitat: – Forested mountain rivers and streams in south-eastern Russia, and north-eastern China. Wintering in central and southern China, Japan, South Korea, and Thailand.
Breeding Season: – April to May.
Eggs: – 8 to 10 (greenish-buff color).
Notes: – The Scaly-sided Merganser or Chinese Merganser is an east-Asian sea duck which dives for small fish and uses its sawbill to grip the fish. This duck is considered to be ‘endangered’ due to habitat loss with the destruction of forests.