Status: A scarce winter visitor from October to March usually associating with other geese.
Conservation Concern: Green-listed in Ireland. The European population is considered to be Secure.
Identification: Very similar to Greylag Goose and care is needed to separate the two species. Pink-footed Goose appears slightly smaller than Greylag Goose in direct comparison. Adult Pink-feet can be identified by the darker brown head and neck, as well as the small and dark beak. Occasionally has a white rim surrounding the bill as in Greenland White-fronted Goose. Juvenile Pink-footed Geese are very similar to adults, but can be distinguished by the lack of barring on the flanks and wings.
Similar Species: White-fronted Goose, Greylag Goose:
Call: Usually silent, though a “wink-wink” is given in flight.
Diet: Like other geese species, Pink-footed Geese feed mainly on grasses.
Breeding: Breeds on the open tundra of Greenland, Iceland and Svalbard from May to August.
Wintering: Pink-footed Geese winter on the coastal marshes of the UK, as well as Belgium and Denmark. It is only a scarce visitor to Ireland associating with other wintering geese such as Greylag and White-fronts.
Where to See: Small numbers of Pink-footed Geese are usually present with the Greenland White-fronted Geese on the North Slob in County Wexford and this remains one of the most reliable sites to see the species.
Monitored by: Irish Wetland Bird Survey.