The Lesser White-fronted Goose weighs between 1.6 and 2.5 kg. It measures 66 cm in length and 115-135 cm in wingspan. It has no marked sexual dimorphism but there is age dimorphism. Adults are grey-brown with a big white patch on the frontlet which reaches the back end of their eyes and their breast have black stripes. Young ones do not have a white patch and stripes. All ages have a yellow ring around the eye.
Distribution and Habitat
The Lesser White-fronted Goose is a palearctic species which breeds in areas from the Scandinavian Peninsula to the Yamal, Taymyr, and Chukchi Peninsula. Its world population is 28 000 – 30 000 birds and in Europe there are only 30 – 50 pairs. It winters in East Asia, Asia Minor, by the Caspian Sea and the Black Sea, in Hungary, and on the Balkan Peninsula.
In Bulgaria it is found in Dobrudzha and by the Black Sea coast (the Burgas lakes and near Varna) and the Danube river coast. In the autumn and winter it is found in flocks, sometimes with the Greater White-fronted Goose, in arable lands and vast water basins.
The Lesser White-fronted Goose feeds mostly on plants- grass, moss, seeds, winter wheat grains, corn grains left after the harvest.
The Lesser White-fronted Goose is a monogamous bird that builds its nest directly on the ground often hidden under a bush. It lays from 4 to 5 cream-colored eggs measuring 76 x 49 mm in length and 100 g in weight. Only the female incubates them for about 25-28 days. The chicks hatch developed enough to walk and feed independently.
According to IUCN its status is Vulnerable, and in Bulgaria according to the Red Data Book it is Critically Endangered.