Birds of America
By John James Audubon, F. R. SS. L. & E.
FAMILY XXX.--PAVONINAE. PAVONINE BIRDS.
Bill rather short, moderately stout, broader than high at the base,
somewhat compressed toward the end; upper mandible with its extremity arched,
thin-edged, and obtuse; lower narrowed and blunt. Head partially denuded,
rather small, oblong; neck long; body very large. Feet stout, rather long;
tarsus anteriorly scutellate; hind toe elevated, anterior toes webbed at the
base. Claws rather denuded, obtuse. Plumage full, the feathers with a very
large plumule and short tube; those of the hind part of the back much developed.
Wings of moderate length, convex, rounded. Tail very large, of more than twelve
feathers. Tongue triangular, pointed; oesophagus dilated into an enormous crop;
stomach a very powerful gizzard, roundish, or transversely elliptical, with very
large muscles, and dense epithelium, having two concave grinding surfaces;
intestines long, and rather wide; coeca very large, oblong, internally with
elevated reticulated ridges. Trachea cylindrical, without inferior laryngeal
muscles. Nest on the ground, rudely constructed. Eggs numerous. Young covered
with stiffish down.