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Birds by name
Conservation status: Amber
The bean goose is one of the 'grey geese'. It tends to be darker and browner than the other species in this group, and to have a darker head and neck. It breeds in north Scandinavia, north Russia and north Asia, and visits Britain in small numbers in autumn and winter. Most of the birds that winter here come from Scandinavia, where the breeding population has declined in the last 20 years. Possible reasons for this decline include increased human disturbance, changes in agriculture and direct persecution.
Swans, ducks and geese (Anatidae)
The best place in Britain to see bean geese is the Yare Valley in Norfolk, which includes the RSPB's Mid-Yare nature reserves. Another flock winters near Falkirk in southern Scotland.
Smaller numbers of the smaller, shorter-billed tundra-breeding race also spend winter here. They are erratic in their appearances, but are regularly seen in east and south-east England.
Between late September and March.
Grass, cereals, potatoes and other crops.
* UK breeding is the number of pairs breeding annually. UK wintering is the number of individuals present from October to March. UK passage is the number of individuals passing through on migration in spring and/or autumn.
Please note that the map is only intended as a guide. It shows general distribution rather than detailed, localised populations.
Patrik Aberg, Xeno-canto