Greater Snow Goose Population Monitoring

Greater Snow Geese are back at the Cap Tourmente National Wildlife Area, Fall 2014

Since 1978, the Cap Tourmente National Wildlife Area (NWA) has witnessed a spectacular increase in the Greater Snow Goose population. Indeed, at the beginning of the century, the population was only about 3 000 birds but now there are more than 1 million. The Cap Tourmente NWA was created to ensure this species’ survival. During their biennial journey between the Atlantic coast and the Far North, Greater Snow Geese stop in this area where they feed on American Bulrush rhizomes and also grain in the fields.

The Canadian Wildlife Service publishes regularly a graph illustrating the number of Greater Snow Geese in the Cap Tourmente NWA for the duration of their fall stay. Counts from Greater Snow Goose surveys conducted at Cap Tourmente NWA this year are available in graph 1.

Graph 1 : Histogram presenting the number of Greater Snow Geese at Cap Tourmente NWA, Fall 2014
(Data for this graph are available in table form below.)

Histogram presenting the number of Greater Snow Geese at Cap Tourmente NWA
Table 1 : Number of Greater Snow Geese at Cap Tourmente NWA, Fall 2014
DateNumber of Greater Snow Geese observed
September 166,300
September 2214,800
September 2437,600
September 2752,400
September 2850,000
October 148,000
October 238,000
October 333,000
October 426,500
October 538,500
October 822,500
October 927,000
October 1029,600
October 1139,300
October 1241,500
October 1344,000
October 1758,000
October 1837,000
October 1930,000
October 20-
October 21-
October 22-
October 23-
October 24-
October 25-
October 26-

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At high tide, Greater Snow Geese are sometimes nearer to the shore and more numerous in the fields; observation is thus much easier (tide tables).

The Greater Snow Geese surveys done at Cap Tourmente NWA over the last three falls show a peak abundance around mid-October. Up to 55 500 Greater Snow Geese were counted in 2013.

Graph 2 : Number of Greater Snow Geese at Cap Tourmente NWA for 2011, 2012 and 2013
(Data for this graph are available in table form below)

Number of Greater Snow Geese
Table 2 : Number of Greater Snow Geese at Cap Tourmente NWA for 2011, 2012 and 2013
Date201120122013
September 13--5,600
September 14--9,000
September 15--5,300
September 16---
September 17---
September 181,200-18,000
September 19---
September 20--15,000
September 21-4,000-
September 22-4,700-
September 236,3004,50027,000
September 248,100--
September 25--40,000
September 26---
September 27--34,000
September 2813,3009,700-
September 2917,700--
September 3032,600-43,500
October 134,30035,20038,000
October 2-31,50030,500
October 333,30030,00034,500
October 443,500-31,000
October 5-45,00021,000
October 654,00050,00042,000
October 752,50047,500-
October 827,80029,000-
October 98,40048,50045,800
October 1018,400-41,000
October 1121,900-55,500
October 1233,50035,80045,500
October 1323,00042,50041,000
October 1419,30039,00055,000
October 156,500--
October 1619,30050,000-
October 1733,30057,50040,500
October 1827,500-28,200
October 1925,60033,50044,000
October 2028,00039,80034,000
October 2115,70049,000-
October 22-41,50041,000
October 2331,50036,00031,500
October 2431,500--
October 2515,00036,800-
October 26---
October 27---
October 2816,000--
October 2914,100--
October 3016,200--
October 31---

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