Greylag Goose x Canada Goose Anser anser x Branta canadensis

This is the commonest hybrid pairing among feral geese, not surprising given that Canada Geese and Greylag Geese are the commonest species of feral geese in most areas.

Appearance is in some ways quite consistent, although precise details can vary even between siblings. They show a diffuse pale cheek patch, usually with a pale eye-ring and often a pale surround to the bill. The blackish-brown neck sock diffusely merges into the paler underparts and the legs are coloured (varying from yellow-ochre to pink or orange).

Evident in several of these photos are dusky or barred undertail-coverts. This might seem surprising as neither parent species have such markings but this seems to be a normal, or at least a frequent, feature of hybrids between Anser species and Branta species. Other Anser x Branta hybrids also show this unexpected feature.

If the Greylag Goose parent is of domestic stock (as will always be the case in North America, but often also in Europe), then the resulting hybrids are more variable than those shown on this page. For such hybrids see the domestic goose x Canada Goose hybrid page.

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presumed Greylag Goose x Canada Goose, Swanton Morley (Norfolk, UK), 8th March 2008

 

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presumed Greylag Goose x Canada Goose, Swanton Morley (Norfolk, UK), 6th April 2009

 

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presumed Greylag Goose x Canada Goose (with Greylag Goose), Swanton Morley (Norfolk, UK), 24th June 2007

 

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presumed Greylag Goose x Canada Goose (with Canada Geese), Swanton Morley (Norfolk, UK), 20th September 2008

 

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presumed Greylag Goose x Canada Goose, Bittering GP (Norfolk, UK), 17th December 2004

 

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presumed Greylag Goose x Canada Goose hybrids, Salthouse (Norfolk, UK), 28th October 2009 - there were at least 7 hybrids in this flock. I had wondered whether some of the duskier-cheeked individuals could be second-generation hybrids, but as yet I have still not seen any clear evidence that Anser x Branta hybrids are fertile, so it's more likely that they're simply within range of variation for this hybrid. I suspect such dusky-cheeked birds are juveniles, but I need to study more to be sure about this.

 

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presumed Greylag Goose x Canada Geese, Bylaugh (Norfolk, UK), 6th September 2008

 

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presumed Greylag Goose x Canada Goose, Swanton Morley (Norfolk, UK), 4th August 2007 - probably the same bird as shown in the top two photos in this section

 

presumed Greylag Goose x Canada Goose, Bittering (Norfolk, UK), 26th August 2013

 

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presumed Greylag Goose x Canada Goose (with Canada Geese), Swanton Morley (Norfolk, UK), 29th May 2010

 

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presumed Greylag Goose x Canada Goose (with Ross's x Barnacle and another Canada x Greylag behind), Salthouse (Norfolk, UK), 4th December 2010

 

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presumed Greylag Goose x Canada Goose hybrids (with Canada Goose), Swanton Morley (Norfolk, UK), 30th January 2011 - the top four photos show one bird and the lower two a different bird

 

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presumed Greylag Goose x Canada Goose hybrids (with Canada Goose), Swanton Morley (Norfolk, UK), 27th February 2011

 

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presumed Greylag Goose x Canada Goose hybrids, Swanton Morley (Norfolk, UK), 16th April 2011

 

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presumed Greylag Goose x Canada Goose hybrid, Wissington Beet Factory (Norfolk, UK), 17th March 2012

 

One of the birds shown above (Swanton Morley, 8th March 2008) was sound recorded. Click on the loudspeaker icons to hear two recordings:

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