Grey Geese (Anser) Identification

Grey Geese belong to the Anser genus and include about seven species including the Bar-headed Goose, Bean Goose, Greylag Goose, Lesser White-fronted Goose, Pink-footed Goose, Swan Goose, and the White-fronted Goose.

The Grey Geese (Anser) all have pink or orange legs, the neck, body, and wings are grey or white, with blackish primary feathers, several species have white on their heads, and they all have white under and upper tail coverts.

Click on the photographs to enlarge them or if you click on the name of the goose then it will take you to another page with information, more photos, and sometimes a video of that particular goose.

Black Geese (Branta)| Grey Geese (Anser)| White Geese (Chen)| All types of Geese.

Click to enlarge Bar-headed Goose
(Anser Indicus)
Photo: Dave Key
Click to enlarge Bean Goose
(Anser Fabalis)
Photo: Wikimedia Commons
Click to enlarge Greylag Goose
(Anser Anser)
Photo: Dave Key
Click to enlarge Lesser White-fronted Goose
(Anser Erythropus)
Photo: Dave Key
Click to enlarge Pink-footed Goose
(Anser Brachyrhyncus)
Photo: Wikimedia Commons
Click to enlarge Swan Goose
(Anser Cygnoides)
Photo: Dave Key
Click to enlarge Greater White-fronted Goose
(Anser flavirostris/Albifrons)
Photo: Dave Key

Bar-headed Goose: The Bar-headed Goose has a white head with distinctive black bars or stripes on its head, black throat extending down the front of the neck and black down the back of the neck, leaving a white stripe down the sides of the neck, upperparts, and breast are medium grey, flanks are grey turning brown on rear flanks, vent and tail border are white, beak is yellow-orange with black tip, and legs and feet are yellow-orange. Both sexes are alike.
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Bean Goose: The Bean Goose looks similar to the Greylag Goose but has a much browner plumage, and an orange yellow beak with black at the base and the tip. The head and neck are dark brown, breast and abdomen are light brown, flanks are dark brown with pale edging, vent and tail coverts are white, upperparts are dark brown with white edging, and the legs and feet are also bright orange. There are five sub-species which differ slightly in appearance and some ornithologists split them into two different species: the Taiga Bean Goose and the Tundra Bean Goose based on their breeding habitat.
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Greylag Goose: The Greylag Goose has a grey-brown plumage with pale fringes on the feathers. Underparts are light-grey with a white belly. Head and neck are grey-brown, beak is orange or pink, and legs are pinkish. Both sexes are alike.
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Lesser White-fronted Goose: The Lesser White-fronted Goose has a dark brown head and neck, the front of the face around the beak is white, a grey-brown plumage with pale fringes on the feathers, darker brown on the back and lighter brownish-buff on the undersides which has broad black bars streaking across lower breast and belly, dull brown flanks, vent and upper tail are white, the beak is pink, and the legs and feet are bright orange. Both sexes are alike. This goose is very similar to the Greater White-fronted Goose but is much smaller, has a smaller beak, yellow eye-ring, and more white on the head above the beak.
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Pink-footed Goose: The Pink-footed Goose has a grey-brown body, darker brown head and neck, short bright pink beak with a black tip and base, white rump and vent, grey tail with white tip, and pink legs and feet. Both sexes are alike. This goose has been considered to be a sub-species of the Bean Goose and looks similar but the Pink-footed Goose can be recognised by its stubby pink beak, pink legs, short neck, and small rounded head.
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Swan Goose: The Swan Goose is a fairly large goose with a long swanlike black beak, the cap, which extends below the eye, and back of neck are chestnut brown, while the bottom half of the face and also front and sides of the neck are pale buff, a narrow white band around the base of the beak, upperparts and flanks are grey-brown with whitish edges to the feathers, underparts are a paler brown, and undertail coverts are white. Legs and feet are orange. Both sexes are similar although the male is larger and has a longer beak and neck.
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Greater White-fronted Goose: The White-fronted Goose has a dark brown head and neck, the front of the face around the beak is white, a grey-brown plumage with pale fringes on the feathers, darker brown on the back and lighter brownish-buff on the undersides which has broad black bars streaking across lower breast and belly, dull brown flanks, vent and upper tail are white, the beak is pink, and the legs and feet are bright orange. Both sexes are alike.
more information.....

Notes: The White Geese (Chen) are also sometimes grouped into the Grey Geese (Anser) genus. The largest Grey Goose is the Greylag Goose.