Ross’s Goose

Anser rossii
Range Map

This species is very similar to the Snow Goose, but the Ross’s Goose is smaller, though a size comparison can only be done when the birds congregate together. Fortunately for us, the two species seem to enjoy each other’s company. More noticeable is the smaller beak size of the Ross’s Goose.

Ross’s Geese breed in central Canada along the western shores of Hudson Bay, in the Queen Maud Gulf Migratory Bird Sanctuary, Baffin Island, and the northern limits of the North American Continent.

Both Ross’s and Snow Geese are relentless grazers, stripping the land in many places in the Arctic where they spend spring and summer. This concerns some researches regarding the negative impact on the environment. Considering these birds have expanded their nesting range since the 1950s, these concerns may have merit.

Because of the remoteness of their breeding grounds, it should surprise no one that I have only met these birds in their winter range in California and New Mexico.

Modern science does not recognise any subspecies of Ross’s Geese (i.e. they are monotypic).

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