French: Oie-armée de Gambie German: Sporngans Spanish: Ganso espolonado
Subspecies and Distribution
P. g. gambensis
(Linnaeus, 1766) – Gambia E to Ethiopia, S to Angola and R Zambezi.
P. g. niger
P. L. Sclater, 1877 – S Africa from Namibia and Zimbabwe to Cape Provinces (South Africa).
75–100 cm; male 4000–6800 g, female 3352–5400 g. Unmistakable. Variable amounts of white on upperwing-coverts. Female similar to male, but somewhat smaller... read more
Weak whistling vocalizations, males giving soft, high-pitched bubbling “cherwit” in flight or when... read more
Common in seasonal and permanent marshes, larger rivers, lakes, reservoirs, etc., particularly... read more
Food and feeding
Basically vegetarian diet; greener parts and seeds of grasses (e.g. Panicum coloratum, Echinochloa colonum), sedges (e.g... read more
Starts during or near end of rainy season, e.g. Sept–Dec (Senegal, Mali), Aug–Nov (Nigeria), Sept–Oct (Ethiopia), all... read more
Undertakes seasonal movements mostly related with availability of water; during dry season, birds... read more
Status and conservation
Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Seasonally common to abundant, occurring on majority of large inland waterbodies. In 1987, total of 38,000 birds counted in W Africa... read more
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