8 Interesting Facts about the Greater White-Fronted Goose

The Greater White-Fronted Goose is a bird that I didn’t have the opportunity to see until I moved to the West. Now when I visit the marshes in the spring, it is a common sight to look up and see flocks of them flying alongside the white snow geese as they all migrate north.

Seeing a new bird means a chance to learn something new, so I began reading and looking for interesting information about the Greater White-Fronted Goose. Here is what I found

  • Due to the salt-and-pepper markings on the breast of the adult Greater White-Fronted Goose, it is often referred to as the “specklebelly” in North America.
  • The Greater White-Fronted Goose has one of the largest ranges of any species of goose in the world. The global range is estimated to be 1,000,000 to 10,000,000 square kilometers.
  • The Greater White-Fronted Goose population is estimated to be about 2,900,000 to 3,300,000 individuals across the globe.


  • The North American Greater White-Fronted Goose breeds along tundra wetlands in Alaska, far-northern Canada, and Greenland. It spends its winters from coastal British Columbia to California, in New Mexico, and along the Gulf coast in Texas and Louisiana
  • As is true of many geese, Greater White-Fronted Goose pairs stay together for years and migrate together, along with their offspring. White-Front family bonds can last longer than in most geese and some young stay with their parents through the next breeding season. Parent and sibling associations may continue throughout their lives.
  • The Greater White-Fronted goslings are able to feed themselves and swim as soon as they hatch but the parents continue to care for them.
  • Greater White-Fronted Geese don’t breed until they are around 3 years old.
  • The Greater White-Fronted Goose often migrates in large flocks at night, when they can be identified by their distinctive call.

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