Tundra Bean Goose Anser (fabalis/serrirostris) rossicus

In Norfolk this is a scarce visitor - a few odd birds are normally found among the Pink-footed Goose flocks and in good years especially, there are often some small flocks somewhere in the county. Any Bean Goose found among the Pink-footed Geese is likely to be Tundra Bean Goose. Taiga Bean Geese Anser (fabalis) fabalis are extremely rare away from the regular wintering sites (the Yare Valley in Norfolk, and in Clyde).

Tundra Bean Geese show significant variation in the size, shape and pattern of the bill, as well as in their overall size. Some individuals may be extremely difficult, if not impossible, to separate from Taiga Bean Goose. For this reason I am very wary of any claims of single Taiga Bean Geese among the Pink-footed Geese. If more than one bird is present and they are all typical of Taiga Bean Goose then the identification might be safe, but for single birds I am not sure if it's always possible to rule out the much more likely Tundra Bean Goose even if it looks like a Taiga Bean Goose.

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Tundra Bean Geese with Pink-footed Geese, S of Brancaster Staithe (Norfolk, UK), 6th December 2004

 

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Tundra Bean Geese, Sparham Pools (Norfolk, UK), 20th March 2009 - the extent of orange on one of these birds' bills may suggest Taiga Bean Goose, however the small size (they were seen with Greylags briefly) and short neck, rounded head and not especially long-looking bills all point to Tundra Bean Goose.

 

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Tundra Bean Goose with Pink-footed Geese, Bircham (Norfolk, UK), 9th December 2011

 

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Tundra Bean Goose with Greylag Geese, Burnham Overy (Norfolk, UK), 4th February 2012

 

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Tundra Bean Goose with Greylag Geese, St John's Loch (Highland, UK), 25th February 2012

 

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Tundra Bean Geese with Greylag and White-fronted Geese, Winless (Highland, UK), 25th February 2012 - lower right is a juvenile, lower left two adults, top four one of the same adults

 

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Tundra Bean Goose with Pink-footed Geese, W of Burnham Market (Norfolk, UK), 19th January 2004

 

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Tundra Bean Geese with Pink-footed Geese, Shernborne (Norfolk, UK), 9th December 2011

 

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Tundra Bean Geese with Pink-footed Geese, N of Stanhoe (Norfolk, UK), 6th January 2004

 

Tundra Bean Geese with Pink-footed Geese, N of Stanhoe (Norfolk, UK), 9th November 2003

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Tundra Bean Geese with Pink-footed Geese, S of Brancaster Staithe (Norfolk, UK), 15th December 2004

 

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Tundra Bean Goose with Pink-footed Geese, S of Brancaster Staithe (Norfolk, UK), 12th January 2005

 

Tundra Bean Geese with Pink-footed Geese, S of Brancaster Staithe (Norfolk, UK), 15th December 2004

 

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Tundra Bean Goose with Pink-footed Geese, between Thornham and Choseley (Norfolk, UK), 18th December 2006

 

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Tundra Bean Geese with Pink-footed Geese, south of Wells (Norfolk, UK), 2nd January 2009

 

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3 Tundra Bean Geese with Pink-footed Geese, near Choseley (Norfolk, UK), 19th February 2010

 

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Tundra Bean Goose with Pink-footed Geese, near Choseley (Norfolk, UK), 18th February 2010

 

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Tundra Bean Geese with Pink-footed and White-fronted Geese, Sheringham (Norfolk, UK), 19th November 2011 - there were 17 Tundra Beans in this flock

 

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Tundra Bean Geese with Pink-footed Geese, Shernborne (Norfolk, UK), 5th December 2011 - three different individuals

 

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Tundra Bean Geese with Pink-footed Geese, south of Burnham Market (Norfolk, UK), 3rd January 2012 - three groups of three

 

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juvenile Tundra Bean Goose, Sheringham (Norfolk, UK), 28th September 2012 - this is more than 1.5 months earlier than any Tundra Bean Goose I've seen in Norfolk previously, a lone bird flying in off the sea; I didn't get the tail pattern on it and some features aren't as classic as I'd like but I think the ID is safe