Assateague Island National Seashore
Assateague Island information guide
Snow geese

flying snow gooseAssateague Island National Seashore offers protective sanctuary for snow geese numbering in the thousands. Birdwatchers witness many large flocks that are on their annual migration. Assateague birdwatchers get to watch them spiral downward during landing and provide a breathtaking experience. Large groups of snow geese nest during the summer in the far north then return to Assateague during the fall. They feed primarily on plant material including wildgrass roots, seeds, berries, and nearby agricultural fields.

Snow goose populations declined during the 1970's and 1980's largely due to coastal marsh damage. During the 1990's, their numbers increased to the point of endangering fragile Arctic tundra and themselves. Hunting bag limits have been increased in an effort to reduce their numbers to a sustainable level. Although the majority of snow geese are white with black wing tips, a few come in a blue color variation known as blue geese.


chincoteague national wildlife refuge

Photograph by Assateague Explorer © 2002

Birdwatching, Fishing and Ponies along Assateague
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(Chen caerulescens)