Wild Geese

Pacific White Front Geese

Pacific White Front Geese Details

Anser albifrons, the Pacific White-Fronted Goose or Greater White-Fronted Goose is a native North American goose species, however there are native populations of this species in the Northern areas of Europe and Siberia as well. A very attractive goose, Pacific White-Fronted Geese have brownish-gray plumage with white lacing on the wings, pink bills, yellow legs and feet, and a distinguishing white band on the face behind the bill. They have dark eyes, and males and females are very similarly colored, although males tend to be a bit larger than females. They have heavy dark mottling on their light-colored lower chest and underparts, which is why they are sometimes referred to as "Specklebellies."

Range: Pacific White-Fronted Geese can be found in Northwestern Canada and Alaska during breeding season and can be seen wintering all along the Western Coast of the U.S. They are usually not seen east of the Mississippi River in North America. But there is a Mid-Continent population that winters in Mexico and Louisiana. Because the Pacific White-Fronted Goose has such a large population in North America as well as a quite large population in Europe and Asia, these geese are considered to have the largest range of any goose in the world.

Habitat: Pacific White-Fronted Geese tend to find breeding locations in tundra wetlands, tidal flats, and marshes. They winter in agricultural fields, near lakes, large ponds, wet meadows, and other freshwater sources, and sometimes in salt or brackish waters as well.

Status in the Wild: The Pacific White-Fronted Goose is currently classified as being of Least Concern.

Status in Aviculture: Pacific White-Fronted Geese are much sought after as aviary specimens and in wild waterfowl collections.

Breeding: Pacific White-Fronted Geese, like most geese, are monogamous and form strong pair bonds. Breeding occurs in spring, usually when the birds are three years old. The female selects the nest site and builds the nest on the ground using mostly dry vegetation, moss, and feathers. She lays 3-6 creamy-tan eggs to a clutch on average, and incubation takes 22-28 days. The female does the setting, and the male stands guard and acts as protector. After hatching goslings become mobile very quickly. They are tended by both parents, but are able to swim and forage for food from day one.

Lifespan: The typical lifespan for a wild goose is between 10 and 20 years old, but in captivity, Pacific White-Fronted Geese have been reported to live over 30 years old.

Size: Pacific White-Fronted Geese are considered medium-sized geese, They are 25–32 inches long, with a 51-65 inch wingspan. Adult birds will weigh between 4 and 7.5 pounds.

Housing Requirements: Pacific White-Fronted Geese will require access to water large enough for swimming and foraging. If your birds are not pinioned, they will be able to fly away, so an enclosure or aviary netting will be needed. Depending on the type of predator in your area, you may need to provide a predator-proof enclosure especially if your water source is not large enough. The natural inclination of Pacific White-Fronted Geese is to run to the water if a threat appears.

Diet: Pacific White-Fronted Geese enjoy a diverse diet, although it is highly vegetarian. They graze on grasses and grains on land and dabble for aquatic vegetation in the water. In winter, they glean grains from agricultural fields. When keeping these birds in captivity, a waterfowl or game bird feed can be used to supplement their diet when forage is scarce.

Miscellaneous Notes: Pacific White-Fronted Geese often choose nighttime to migrate, and do so in large flocks in the dark sky, identifiable by their distinctive calls.

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Pacific White Front Geese

Pacific White Front Geese

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