A medium-sized goose, the
white-fronted averages 25 to 32 inches in length,
has an average wingspan of 53 inches, and weighs
between four and nine pounds.
General coloration is
gray-brown, with black speckles on the belly. The
forehead, base of bill, rump, flanks and
undertail are white, the tail is dark with white
tip, and there is a thin white stripe along each
side. The bird's common name comes from the white
on the upper chest and front of the neck. The
least distinctively marked of all the geese,
white-fronteds are often confused with domestic
geese, although domestics lack the black belly
markings and have thinner necks and bigger
Both sexes look alike, although
the male is usually slightly larger than the
female. Goslings lack the white forehead and
black belly marks but are otherwise miniature
versions of their parents.
Distribution and Habitat
The white-fronted goose breeds
across the Arctic tundra of Europe, Asia and
North America. In North America it winters along
the Pacific States from southern British Columbia
southward to southern Mexico, and from central
Mexico to the Mississippi River. Eurasian
populations winter in the British Isles and
During the breeding season
these geese are found along tundra wetlands. They
spend their winters in agricultural fields,
marshes, bays, and lakes.
As is true of many geese,
greater white-fronted geese pair for years (not
necessarily for life, however) and migrate
together in family groups. Family bonds can last
longer than in most other geese, and some young
stay with their parents through the next breeding
season. Parent-sibling associations may continue
throughout their lives.
The nest is a depression
scraped in the ground and lined with plant
material and flowers. A clutch may contain
anywhere from one to eight white to tan eggs.
Goslings are able to leave the nest within 24
hours of hatching.
White-fronted geese feed on
seeds, grain, grasses, sedges, and berries.
genus & species Anser albifrons
All About Birds http://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Greater_White-fronted_Goose/id
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