Magpie Goose

Anseranatidae

The sole living representative of this family is the Magpie Goose Anseranas semipalmata. It differs from the ducks, geese and swans of the family Anatidae by having only partially webbed toes. This large goose is widespread throughout coastal northern and eastern Australia, although some individuals, mostly younger birds, are seen quite long distances inland. It is also found in southern New Guinea.

Magpie Goose

Magpie Goose

This large, noisy goose is readily recognised. The head and neck are black and there is a characteristic knobbed crow. The underparts are white with contrasting black margins on the underwing. The legs, feet and bill are orange. Males can reach up to 92 cm, but females are slightly smaller. It frequents floodplains and wet grasslands, where it is a specialist feeder, with wild rice Oryza, Panicum,...