Creature Feature

Creature Feature – Snow Geese

Posted by  //  March 16, 2020  //  Articles, Creature Feature

Spring is coming!  It’s time to keep our eyes and ears open for migrating snow geese passing overhead in huge, noisy flocks.  They are on an incredible journey north to the Alaskan and Canadian tundra, where they breed and nest in colonies.  During their odyssey, they stop to rest and feed in wetlands, spacious fields and agricultural tracts or on frozen lakes.  It’s an explosive visual and auditory experience to encounter hundreds or even thousands of snow geese taking off.  

Snow geese have two color patterns.  One is a “white morph,” with a white body and black wing tips.  The other type is called a “blue morph,” where the body is gray-brown and any white feathers are limited mostly to the head.  Flocks have individuals with both colorations. They choose life-long partners of the same color type as the family members they were raised with.  With seemingly insatiable appetites, snow geese gobble up a broad variety of vegetation. They are excellent fliers and swimmers and can run fast enough to escape some predators.

Snow geese populations are growing quickly now, but between 1916 and 1975, hunting them in the eastern US was restricted over conservation concerns.

Article & Photo by Margie Manthey

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