• BirdForum is the net's largest birding community dedicated to wild birds and birding, and is absolutely FREE!

    Register for an account to take part in lively discussions in the forum, post your pictures in the gallery and more.

Cackling or Canada Goose? (1 Viewer)

sirijay

Well-known member
I took this photo near Oakland CA yesterday. There was a large flock of geese, some of whom were clearly Canada and some more like the bird in this photo - my impression was that this bird was smaller, had a short neck, larger white patch on face and a smaller beak. I believe it is a Cackling Goose, because I had a reasonable view of both species together - but wanted to confirm. Thanks for your help. Goose.jpg
 

D Halas

Well-known member
This is a small Canada Goose. A Cackling Goose would have a stubbier bill, and a rounder head with a more prominent forehead.
 

Deb Burhinus

Used to be well known! 😎
Europe
Definitely a Greater Canada Goose, if there was a very noticeable size difference then possibly a Lesser Canada Branta canadensis parvipes which afaik winter in CA/Mexico and have relatively large cheek patches. If not a Lesser, possibly moffitti which I think would be the resident Canada Goose for CA. To be honest, it is hard enough to identify any down to sub-species other than most extreme examples, let alone from an image of a single bird but range and separating Cackling from Canadas is a good start which can be done just on the bill size in this image.

Lesser https://www.birdguides.com/species-guide/ioc/branta-canadensis-parvipes/


As a field note - when it comes to identifying sub-species of Canada or Cackling: It is difficult to tell size without a comparison image and there is often overlap between sub-species - there is also slight sexual dimorphism in size with females being smaller than male - also long necked birds have a habit of looking thick and short necked when relaxed!
 
Last edited:

Lisa W

Moderator
Staff member
Supporter
Hi, just wanted to remind you that per the forum rules you need to pit the location in the thread title. Thanks.
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Top