[Tweeters] Ross's Goose continues in Vancouver

Cara Borre cmborre at comcast.net
Sun Dec 22 18:06:49 PST 2013


The Ross's Goose that has been reported previously at these coordinates:
45.6635x-122.7406 in Vancouver continues to share the company of Cacklers
and Snow Geese in this plowed-over cornfield. This area is just south of
Vancouver Lake and found here on google

I located the goose in my scope after first scanning with binos and not
initially finding a smaller white goose among the flock. Probably took me
5-10 minutes of scoping to find the Ross's Goose, which can be
distinguished from the larger Snow Geese by it's lack of a "grin patch",
it's smaller bill, it's vertical, rather than curved base as the bill meets
the head (all tips in Sibley). Here are my pics from
that may also aid identification.


On my way home, following a brief, foggy detour to Puget Island, it
occurred to me I had almost completed a "goose big week", or more
accurately, a 2-day "goose-a-thon". Having seen "the" Emperor Goose,
Canada Geese and Brandt in Gardiner on Thursday, and "the" Ross's Goose,
Cackling Geese and Snow Geese today in Vancouver, I was just missing
Greater White-fronted Goose. I decided to go for this "golden goose" with
a stop at Nisqually. It was about 3:30pm when I pulled in, already
becoming dark. I made a quick lap only to find a few Canada Geese. As I
approached my car in defeat, I decided to give the visitor center pond a
try. Making my way to the visitor center I heard the familiar sound of
distant Cacklers and turned to see waves of geese approaching from the
south. I scanned the ever darkening sky, but could only turn up Cackler
after Cackler with an occasional Canada thrown in. They started to land so
I tried a new strategy and scoped them as they landed. Still Cackler,
Cackler, Cackler, Cackler, Canada..... then, as "goose bumps" rose on my
neck, a pink bill with a white front came into view. My wild goose chase
was complete and perhaps a new Christmas birding tradition born.


Cara Borre
Gig Harbor
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