The Snow Goose (Anser caerulescens) is a North American species of goose. Its name derives from the typically white plumage. The American ornithologist, David Sibley, places this species and the other North American "white" geese in the genus Chen, rather than the more traditional "grey" goose genus Anser. The Snow Goose is then classed as Chen caerulescens. Snow geese migration, Bosque del Apache, New Mexico: note blue phase bird at far leftThis goose breeds in northern Canada and the northeastern tip of Siberia, and winters much further south in the continent in the southern USA and beyond. These birds migrate in large flocks, often visiting traditional stopover habitats in spectacular numbers.













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A larger race of this bird, the Greater Snow Geese (A. c. atlanticus), nests to the north of eastern Canada. The smaller race, the Lesser Snow Goose (A. c. caerulescens), occurs in two plumage variants. White phase birds are white except for black wing tips, but blue phase geese have bluish plumage replacing most of the white except on the head, neck and tail tip. White and blue phase birds do interbreed and the young may be of either type. Blue phase birds are rare among the Greater Snow Geese. Snow geese migration, Bosque del Apache, New Mexico: note two blue phase birds in centerThis species is a rare vagrant to Europe, but a frequent escape from collections and an occasional feral breeder. The nest is usually located in a slightly-elevated location on the ground, built with plant material and lined with down.

Above Images From The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service









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