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Canada goose (Branta canadensis)

Canada goose
Canada goose

Personal Information
The Zoo’s two Canada geese were acquired as non-releasable rehab animals. One arrived in 1997 while the other came here in 2009. They were wing-injured and could not fly well enough to sustain themselves. Both are in the same exhibit as the bald eagles.

Status in the Wild
The Canada goose is very common and listed as least concern by the International Union of Conservation of Nature (IUCN). In recent years, the population has grown substantially enough that many consider them a nuisance in certain areas. Human activity, such as an abundance of man-made bodies of water, has created greater opportunity for the Canada goose to thrive.

Canada geese live near waterways in open grassy areas in most of North America. They are also found in the Caribbean.

The Canada goose is a herbivore. On land they eat a wide variety of grasses and grains such as corn, wheat and oats. In the water they eat aquatic plants.

  • Canada geese fly in large flocks of V-shaped formation and can travel up to 620 miles in one day.
  • Canada geese are migratory. They spend their summers in the northern parts of North America, especially Canada, and migrate south in the winter months.
  • The honking of Canada geese overhead has been a sign of seasonal transition.
  • Canada geese have strong family bonds. They usually mate for life and goslings stay with their parents for a full year.
  • Canada geese have good eyesight, necessary for flight. Their eyes are on the side of their heads, enabling them to see more than 180 degrees, closer to 270 degrees, both horizontally and vertically.