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Species Hierarchy 
Common name: SWAN - TRUMPETER


Species Info:

This lifeform is generally found west of the Continental Divide in North America

Trumpeter Swans (Cygnus buccinator) are found rarely from Nevada to Alaska. Because this species is in danger of extinction, it has been reintroduced in various places in the United States. These are very large white birds and can be up to seventy inches long with a wingspan up to ten feet.

Geese and Swan subfamily (Subfamily Anserinae) contains the
geese and swans. Thirty-three species have been placed in this
subfamily as follows:


   Anseranas semipalmata   Magpie Goose Australia

   Whistling Ducks)

   Dendrocygna arborea     W.Indian     Neotropical
   Dendrocygna arcuata     Wandering    Orient & Australia
   Dendrocygna bicolor     Fulvous      Worldwide
   Dendrocygna eytoni      Plumed       Australia
   Dendrocygna fallalis    Red Billed   New World
   Dendrocygna guttata     Spotted      Orient-Australian
   Dendrocygna javanica    Indian       Old World
   Dendrocygna viduata     White Faced  Africa and Neotropic
   Cygnus olor             Mute Swan    Europe and introduced
   Cygnus atratus          Black Swan   Australia
   Cygnus melanocoryphus   Black Neck   Neotropical
   Cygnus cygnus           Whooper      Eurasia
   Cygnus buccinator       Trumpeter    North America
   Cygnus columbianus      Whistling    Asia and North America
   Coscoroba coscoroba     Coscoroba    Neotropic  

   Anser albifrons          White Front  Holarctic
   Anser anser              Graylag      Eurasia
   Anser brachyhnchus       Bean         Greenland & Europe
   Anser canagicus          Emperor      Alaska & Siberia
   Anser coreulescens       Blue         Canada
   Anser cygnoides          Swan Goose   Asia
   Anser erythropus         Lesser White Eurasia
   Anser fabalis            Bean Goose   Eurasian & Oriental
   Anser indicus            Bar Head     Eurasia
   Anser rossii             Ross' Goose  Canada

  Branta canadensis         Canada       N. America
  Branta bernicla           Brant        Arctic
  Branta leucopsis          Barnacle     Greenland and Europe
  Branta ruficollis         Red Breast   Eurasia
  Branta sandvicensis       Hawaian      Hawaii
  Cereopsis novaeholland    Cape Barren  Australia
  Stictoneta naevosa        Freckled     Australia

Duck and Geese Family (Family Anatidae) contains the familiar  ducks and geese. There are about one hundred and fifty-three species in this family.

Some forms are sometimes regarded as species, and at other times are regarded as subspecies. An attempt has been made here to include as species those forms that frequently appear both ways (Anas crecca/carolinensis, for example).

It is also difficult to exactly count the species, as some authors ignore recently extinct species, and other authors include them in their counts. The following recent extinctions have also been included in the lists that follow as these may cause problems for the taxonomist trying to tie out exact counts:

         Labrador Duck         Camptorhynchus labradorius
         Korean Shelduck       Tadorna cristata
         Madagascan White-Eye  Aythya innotata
         Auckland Merganser    Mergus australis
         Pink Headed Duck      Rhodonessa caryophyllaca

This family is usually divided into several tribes as it helps the taxonomist and student alike in learning the many species. There is no agreement upon the natural subdivisions of this family. The following divisions were arbitrarily chosen and placed into alphabetical order:

        Surface Ducks      Anatinae        80 species
        Geese and Swans    Anserinae       33 species
        Diving Ducks       Aythyinae       25 species
        Mergansers         Mergini          6 species
        Ruddy Ducks        Oxyurinae        9 species
                                 Total    153 species

Waterfowl Order (Order Anseriformes) contains two different
families of rather divergent appearance and habitat. The South American (Neotropical) Screamers contain three species, and the worldwide ducks and geese contain about 153 species to total about 156 species in the order. Actually, at least five of these species are recently extinct, so there are less than the above numbers remaining.

Aves contains about 8,650 different species of living birds known to science. Each year about one new species is discovered in some remote rain forest or remote island. In addition, scientists have been raising many subspecies to full species status which may raise the species count to 10,000.

However, each year about one species goes extinct. The rate of extinction is increasing, and the rate of new discovery is decreasing, so that the number of bird species will soon begin to decline rapidly. Although different taxonomists would organize the birds differently, there are approximately twenty-seven orders of birds. These orders are broken down into about one hundred and fifty-five different families.

Recent research of the genetic structure of some of the shore birds and owls would indicate that the present organization of orders and families should have some modification.

The birds are a worldwide group of animals that are characterized by having the front limbs modified into wings that are used for flying. Perhaps the most unique feature of the birds is the feathers. These feathers are made up of a central support called a quill and a series of small filaments that are hooked together as barbs.

For many years it was believed that Archaeopteryx discovered in Bavaria was the oldest bird from about 150 million years ago.  However, in l986, Sankar Chattterjee, a Texas paleontologist, reportedly discovered a bird in the genus Protoavis that lived about 225 million years ago.

Backboned Animals (Phylum Chordata) are the most advanced group of animals on earth. These animals are characterized by having a spinal cord or backbone. Most members have a clearly defined brain that controls the organism through a spinal cord. Fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals are in this phylum.

Currently, some taxonomists believe that the fish should be divided into two groups (sharks and regular fishes) and that there are some other primitive groups in the phylum such as hagfish or lampreys.

Animal Kingdom contains numerous organisms that feed on other animals or plants. Included in the animal kingdom are the lower marine invertebrates such as sponges and corals, the jointed legged animals such as insects and spiders, and the backboned animals such as fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals.


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