Ed Golson Outdoor Education

Canada Goose

Scientific Name: Branta canadensis

Description:  Canada geese are characterized by having a black head, neck and bill, with contrasting white cheeks, throat, and chest.  The rest of their bodies are brown or black, except their undertails, which are white.  These birds are relatively large, ranging from 20 to 50 inches long with a wing-span of 50-68 inches!  Since these birds are water birds, they have black webbed feet, which allows them to paddle more efficiently through the water.  When they are first born they have yellow and gray feathers and a dark bill.  Within nine weeks, however, they look like a small version of the adults.

Habitat: Distributed across upper North America, Canada geese are most commonly found near water, such as: lakes , ponds , and rivers .  However, more recently they have been sighted in city parks because people feed them.  Since humans are interrupting the birds' natural habitat , over population of Canada geese has become a problem in some areas.  During the wi nt er m any of these birds migrate south. Interestingly enough they follow the same route every year!

Feeding:  Canada geese eat aquatic vegetation, like most waterfowl.  They also eat items from agricultural areas, like corn and grain.

Click to hear the goose's call.

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