Heart of America Game
Breeders' Association

Descriptive Terms Found in Articles Dealing with Birds

This article was printed in the March 1998 issue of the Heartland News. This is designed to help those new to the hobby understand the terminology used in the articles and hints printed in the newsletter, as well as other bird related books or websites.

Cere - The naked skin that covers the base of the beak.
Chestnut Brown - Reddish brown.
Chrome Yellow - Brilliant yellow.
Cobalt Blue - Dark blue.
Covert Feathers - Wing Coverts: small feathers covering the wings; Tail Coverts: covers rectrices (see below).
Crest - Feathers adorning the top of the head as associated with peafowl, Impeyan, Edwards, Kalij, Silver Pheasants, etc.
Crown - Top of the head.
Culmen - The lengthwise ridge running down the middle of the uppper mandible or beak/bill.
Fulvous - Dull yellowish brown, tawny.
Lore - The space between the beak and eye.
Mantle - The wings, shoulder feathers and back of a bird.
Mottled - Marked with spots of different colors or shades of color.
Nape - Back of neck.
Ocelli - Eyes or spot of color encircled by a band of another color as found on tail feathers of peafowl and peacock pheasants.
Rectrices - Main stiff tail feathers.
Scapulars - Shoulders of the bird.
Speculum - Pattern of distinctive wing feather coloration, sometimes iridescent, usually involving the secondary feathers.
Tarsus - Shank or that portion that extends between the toes and the hock.
Vermiculated - Fine, wavy pigmentation patterns on feathers that appear wormlike in appearance.

domestic goose, photo by Dan Cowell

March 1998 The Heartland News