The Key to Scientific Names

Edited by James A. Jobling
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ALOPOCHEN

(Anatidae; Ϯ Egyptian Goose A. aegyptiaca) Gr. αλωπος alōpos  fox-like  < αλωπηξ alōpēx, αλωπεκος alōpekos  fox; χην khēn, χηνος khēnos  goose. The Egyptian Goose was known as χηναλωπηξ khēnalōpēx   fox-goose, to the ancient Greeks, from the colour of its plumage and ability to protect its goslings from foxes (although the name could equally apply to the Ruddy Shelduck Tadorna ferruginea); "Another African form of the same family is the well-known Egyptian or Nile goose (Alopochen ægyptiaca). It is often found figured on the Egyptian monuments, and was known to the ancient Greeks, who called it 'chenalopex,' or fox-goose, either because it breeds in burrows, or on account of its color, which is more or less rusty, especially round the eyes, neck, tertials, and a spot on the breast.  ...  The Egyptian goose has no close ally in the Old World, and it is a somewhat extraordinary fact that the Orinoco goose (Alopochen jubata), brown, with green wings and white wing speculum, head, and neck, and with a slight nuchal crest or 'mane,' which inhabits northeastern South America, seems to be congeneric with it." (Stejneger 1885); "Alopochen Stejneger, Standard Nat. Hist., 4, 1885, p. 141. Type, by subsequent designation, Anas ægyptiaca Linné. (Oberholser, Journ. Wash. Acad. Sci., 8, 1918, p. 572.)" (Peters, 1931, I, p. 154). 
Synon. Chenalopex, Mascarenachen.


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