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Ross’s Goose (Anser rossii)

Ross's goose


  • Body length ranges from 54 to 66 centimetres (inches).
  • Wingspan can range from 118 to 135 centimetres (inches).


  • General characteristics for both males and females include:
    • White plumage
    • Dark pink bill with small warts on the base
    • Dark pink feet
    • Black wing tips
  • Immature geese have grey plumage, and dark bills and feet.


  • Call is a high pitched and squeaky luk-luk.
  • Wintering range for this species is in California.
  • Breeding range covers a restricted area of the Arctic coast from Perry River to Banks Island.
  • Ross’s geese do not nest in Alberta; they migrate through the province in the spring and autumn.
Natural History


  • Can be found in shallow wetlands, lakes and fields.


  • Ross's geese, like other species, feed on young grass shoots, and waste grain when migrating.
Reproduction and Growth

Breeding Behaviour

  • Ross's geese build nests of mosses and reeds lined with down, on the ground on the tundra.
  • They lay three to six creamy-white eggs.
Conservation and Management


Ross's geese are classified as Secure in the current General Status of Alberta Wild Species report. See:

Current management


Hunting season information for this species is provided in the current Alberta Guide to Hunting Regulations. To view the guide online or to order a printed copy, visit the My Wild Alberta website at:

Similar Species
  • Snow Goose
    Ross’s geese are indistinguishable from snow geese except for size (Ross’s geese are smaller), voice and the lack of a grinning patch on the bill.


Page Information

Updated: Jan 8, 2014