The Western Greylag Goose (Anser anser anser) is a large water bird, a wetlands bird, in the Anatidae family. There are two types: Western Greylag Goose and Eastern Greylag Goose.
The Western Greylag Goose has mottled and barred grey and white feathers and an orange beak. It has a thick, long neck and a large head. It has pink legs and pink feet.
It measures 74-91 centimetres (29-36 inches) tall, with a wingspan of 147-180 centimetres (58-71 inches).
The Western Greylag Goose is widespread across Europe. The Eastern Greylag Goose is widespread across Asia. The Western Greylag Goose migrates south in winter. It prefers moorlands, marshes, lakes, estuaries, floodplains, and coastal islands.
It feeds on grass, so it is herbivorous.
It mates for life. It makes a nest on the ground. Females lay 4-6 eggs, and she sits on them until they hatch. The male remains on guard and chases away intruders. The chicks are called goslings. The goslings are precocial, which means that they are born with some feather, and can leave the nest soon after hatching. Both parents care for the young. The goslings are fully feathered after 8-9 weeks.
Photographer: Martina Nicolls
Martina Nicolls: SIMILAR BUT DIFFERENT IN THE ANIMAL KINGDOM