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Checklist S50223778

 
Location
William L. Finley NWR--McFadden Marsh, Benton County, Oregon, US ( Map ) ( Hotspot )
Date and Effort
Sun Nov 25, 2018 2:38 PM
Protocol:
Incidental
Party Size:
1
Observers:
W. Douglas Robinson
Comments:
Many others present
Species
1 species total
1

Seems that the most parsimonious identification here is serrirostris. Europeans do not currently consider Taiga and Tundra separate species as far as I understand, but AOS still does. Pics do not capture neck length issues well because this varies so much with posture, but overall while watching the bird it appeared to be shorter- and thicker-necked than one might expect for at least the middendorff's subspecies of Bean Goose and the overall bill and head shapes are incorrect for middendorrff's. The bird is lacking all or most of its left foot, so it limps. All bill color characteristics overlap among the 4 subspecies so the bill pattern is not diagnostic for Tundra. Some field guides oversimplify this complex identification problem. At this point I cannot definitively rule out a couple of the subspecies in the current western Taiga species, but aside from those this seems to fit Tundra best. Perhaps genetic studies will reveal that the bean goose really is just one species, plus perhaps another that includes only middendorff's.