Barnacle Goose (Branta leucopsis)
Barnacle Goose, Caerlaverock, Scotland, February 2001 - click for larger image

Scotland

There are three distinct populations of Barnacle Goose in the world: the first breeds in Greenland and winters on the Western Isles of Scotland, notably Islay; the second breeds on the island of Svalbard (Spitzbergen) north of Norway and winters on the Solway Firth on the Scottish/English border; while the third group breeds on Novaya Zemlya to the north of Russia and winters in the Netherlands

Barnacle Goose, Caerlaverock, Scotland, February 2001 - click for larger image Caerlaverock where these photos were taken, is the main wintering area for the Svalbard population and was set up as a nature reserve in 1957 to help protect Barnacle Geese. The birds arrive in October and depart during April.

They tend to be very nervous and it is difficult to approach without disturbing them.

Barnacle Goose, Caerlaverock, Scotland, February 2001 - click for larger image There are illustrations in HBW, Volume 1, Pages 566 and 580.
Barnacle Goose, Caerlaverock, Scotland, February 2001 - click for larger image
Barnacle Goose, Aberlady, East Lothian, Scotland, October 2006 - click for larger image
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