Thursday, March 08, 2012

Bosque - Ross's Goose

In the previous post, I suggested looking at the last photo (repeated below)  very closely for a "different species." Just to the left of the Snow Goose coming in for a landing is a goose which is smaller, with a rounded head, stubby bill, and "sweeter" look - Ross's Goose.

Left of the Snow Goose which is landing is a "sweeter" goose - Ross's Goose

The photo was a piece of luck. I scanned the hundreds of Snow Geese, and thought I had found a Ross's Goose. Then I could not find it again. Search again - find it, try for a photo, but unable to find it through the lens.

So I sat on the ground, scanned, tried for the photo, and continued ... until the Ross's Goose finally took pity and remained visible.

Smaller Ross's Goose between Snow Geese in foreground and background
Ross's Goose behind white juvenile Snow Goose
Several years ago in the Champlain Valley in Vermont, the Snow Geese were close to the viewing area; Ross's Goose was also present, in a ratio of about 1 in 1000. But some good views were possible. In other words, I have not had a lot of experience with Ross's and felt particularly satisfied at finding geese which are very similar in appearance to Snow Geese.

2 Ross's Goose among Snow Geese
Close up - Ross's Geese
There is a small grain of doubt which wonders if the Ross's might be Ross x Lesser Snow hybrid; I will stay with Ross's Goose, but if anyone thinks otherwise, please let me know.

Good Birding!!


Laurence Butler said...

They look like pre bread Ross's to me. Nice photos! You've highlighted that tricky identification process really well.

KaHolly said...

Good to know! The trick will be remembering what I've read, ha, ha. (Actually, it's not so funny!). I've birded Maine and Mass., but haven't had the pleasure to venture into VT, yet. Look forward to the opportunity some day.


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