12/19 - Cackling Goose in Orange

Before the snow started this morning I was able to pin down the Cackling Goose that flew out of Lake Wepawaug yesterday afternoon. It was located in a flock of ~100 Canadas in the field opposite Wright's Pond, which is at the intersection of Old Grassy Hill Road and Ridge Road in Orange. Tomorrow is the local CBC...hope it sticks around one more day!

It has a growth (tumor?) on its forehead which distorts the true shape of the bird's head profile, slightly complicating its subspecific identity. Otherwise, this is a pretty good example of a Richardson's Cackling Goose, though a bit on the darker-breasted side. If anyone has any comments on the bird's subspecific identity, please feel free to comment.

Note the frosty gray-brown feather bases on the upperparts, which set off the darker subterminal lines. Seeminglingly blocky head despite the growth. Short, stubby bill. Wide white cheek patch.

Note the partial white neck collar, set off by darker breast.

Just as easily picked-out by upperpart color as by size.

No sign of a black line down the center of the chin on the Cackler (middle bird).

- NB


  1. Great site. I would like to provide a link from my site to yours. If that is a problem, let me know.

  2. Great Blog you have here. I too am a shore bird fan, my favorite ! We saw a cackler also 3 weeks ago scouting for the CMC here in NJ.

    Tony perrotta


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