Canada Goose


“The Canada Goose is native to the American Continent, migrating from Alaska down the Yukon and so to its winter quarters on the Gulf of Mexico. It is possible that a few of the winter Hebridean birds are storm-deflected strays, though it would surely take a tornado rather than a gale to turn a wild goose from its self-appointed course.

But these geese have been  acclimatised to England as a domestic or ornamental bird since the eighteenth century.

Many of these birds have broken from their polite servitude, and these pioneers have formed and maintained so genuinely a free-living race of wild geese that they have positively added a new species to the British list.

The birds are less nocturnal then the Barnacles, and feed on cultivated land. The succulent mere-grass is a favourite diet. The cry is as wild, deep and resonant as the Brents’, and less shrill than the Barnacles’. Wild geese are said to “honk,” but that is what motor-cars do, not geese. “Homg, hong” is a truer onomatopœism, and the Canada Geese I have heard at Holkham, on the North Norfolk coast, honged their way between sand and sky”.

This description is by H.J. Massingham in his book ‘Birds of the Seashore’ . Read more here.


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