The Smew (Mergellus albellus) is a small duck which is somewhat intermediate between the typical mergansers (Mergus) and the goldeneyes (Bucephala). It is the only member of the genus Mergellus; sometimes included in Mergus, this genus is well distinct (though closely related) and might actually be a bit closer to the goldeneyes. The Smew has interbred with the Common Goldeneye (B. clangula).
This species breeds in the northern taiga of Europe and Asia. It needs trees for breeding. The Smew lives on fish-rich lakes and slow rivers. As a migrant it leaves its breeding areas and winters on sheltered coasts or inland lakes of the Baltic Sea, the Black Sea, northern Germany and the Low Countries, with small number reaching Great Britain, mostly at regular sites. Vagrants have been recorded in North America. On lakes it prefers areas around the edges, often under small trees.
Smew in "Birdwitching"Edit