barnacle goose love

Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A waterfowl (Branta leucopsis) of northern Europe and Greenland that breeds in the Arctic and has a white face with a black streak between the eyes and bill.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A black and white species of bird from the northern hemisphere, scientifically known as the Branta leucopsis

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. European goose smaller than the brant; breeds in the far north

Etymologies

Earlier barnacle; see barnacle.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Because this goose nests in the far north, Europeans never saw its chicks, and invented a theory that the goose barnacle is the larval form of the barnacle goose. (Wiktionary)

Examples

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  • Their roots so deeply soaked send from their stocky boughs
    A soft and sappy gum, from which these tree-geese grow;
    Still great and greater thrive, until you well may see
    Them turned to perfect fowls; when dropping from the tree
    Into the merry pond which under them doth lie,
    Wax ripe, and taking wing, away in flocks do fly.

    (17th century poet, Michael Drayton)

    November 18, 2008

  • In the Mediæval Bestiary:
    "Barnacle geese come from trees that grow over water. These trees produce birds that look like small geese; the young birds hang from their beaks from the trees. When the birds are mature enough, they fall from the trees; any that fall into the water float and are safe, but those that fall on land die."

    October 12, 2008

  • see anatiferous

    July 10, 2007