Interested in learning about the Lesser Canada Goose? Want to know what distinguishes the sub-species of Lesser Canadian Geese? Read our guide for more facts and information…
It is difficult to distinguish between the different subspecies of Canada Goose as most of the species generally share colouring and features; however, with careful consideration it is possible to distinguish between the subspecies. The Lesser Canada Goose offers a wide variation in colour; but, the subspecies is commonly light grey or brown and the colour is usually lighter on the breast. Some portions of the Lesser Canada Goose appear white; however, the subspecies actually has no features that are pure white. The colouring throughout the Lesser Canada Goose is lighter than the larger subspecies of Canada Goose. The Lesser Canada Goose also features an off white neck ring which is less evident on immature birds. The body of the Lesser Canada Goose is also distinctive. The bill of the Lesser Canada Goose is relatively large as the length is equal to 75% of the length of the goose’s head. The bill is also situated lower on the face than other species. The Lesser Canada Goose also appears to have a thin neck as well as short legs. The bodies of the bird are also shorter. The head shape is distinguishable as it rounded and has no sharp angles. Finally, although size can create confusion between the subspecies, the Lesser Canada Goose weighs between 5 and 6 pounds.
Identifying Lesser Canadian Geese
It is common to identify the Lesser Canada Goose based on size alone; however this frequently leads to errors. The Lesser Canada Goose is small and therefore is often mistakenly seen as a member of the Cackling Goose species. The Lesser Canada Goose is actually a member of the Branta Canadensis family and is the smallest subspecies of the family. The Lesser Canada Goose is in fact smaller than the largest Cackling Goose. Rather than identifying the Lesser Canada Goose through size it is easier to use the distinguishing features of the subspecies appearance as well as the width of the bird as the species is generally relatively narrow.
Lesser Canadian Geese Habitat
The Lesser Canada Goose is located primarily in the inlands of Western Canada and Central Alaska. The subspecies spends the springs through to the fall in these regions before migrating to spend the winters in the Western United States primarily Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and Utah. The Lesser Canada Goose has adapted well to changing environments to human impact on their natural habitat. The Lesser Canada Goose has adapted to human influence in one way by expanding the population of the geese that live in urban areas. In Anchorage, Alaska the birds have multiplied to the point that the city has had to consider steps to curb their impact. The Lesser Canada Goose has a relatively stable population, which is a credit to the adaptability of the subspecies. Despite the adaptability of the subspecies, the Lesser Canada Goose prefers to make its habitat in open areas including bodies of water. The species is commonly found in large groups as the Lesser Canada Goose tends to migrate and live in large families or flocks.