Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Gannet, any bird of the genus Sula, with eight species, belonging to the Pelican family, and universally distributed in cold and temperate regions. The face and neck are naked; the bill is straight and strong, and longer than the head; the four toes are long and united by a membrane. The gannets are good swimmers and clivers, very powerful on the wing, living on fish, and nesting socially on rocky cliffs and islands. The best-known species is the Common Gannet or Solan Goose (S. bassama), a British bird, breeding on Ailsa Craig, the Bass Rock (whence it derives its specific name), Lundy,' St. Kilda, and on the Skelligs off the coast of Kerry. The nests are rude structures of seaweed, and each contains but a single white egg. The adult ' male is a little under three feet long, and has the naked skin of the face blue, head and neck buff, primaries black, and the rest of the plumage white. The young during their first year are black, marked with lines and dots of white, so that the chief resemblance between young and adult birds is in the long, straight bill. Large numbers of the young birds are taken every year at the Bass for the sake of their down. The flesh of old birds is rank, but that of the young is valued for food, and both young and old birds yield oil. The eggs are considered a delicacy. ,S'. variegata, from the Southern hemisphere, is one of the birds that have formed the guano deposits in the Pacific islands. [Booby.]