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, Paspalum and spike-rush Eleocharis forming the bulk of its diet. Pairs of geese mate for life, but the male may have two females. As two females may occasionally use the same nest (built in secluded places, usually close to wetlands), the large, oval, off-white coloured eggs may number up to 16, but 8 is a more common clutch size.

Scientific name: Anseranas semipalmata

Do you want to know where to go to see this species? Check out our latest book “Australia’s Birdwatching Megaspots” – available for purchase at major retailers or directly from us