Greylag Goose – 2003-07 breeding

Anser anser – GWYDD WYLLT – naturalised resident

Comparison with previous atlas:

1984-882003-07
Breeding confirmed1
Breeding probable2
Breeding possible2
No of tetrads occupied05 (of 490)
Percentage of tetrads1%

Greylags have been a regular winter visitors to the county since 1972, and are thought to be derived from feral populations. Today, the Greylag Goose is a naturalised resident in Pembrokeshire throughout the year, and breeding was confirmed during the 2003-07 survey.

As shown on the tetrad map, all the records were obtained in tetrads in the vicinity of the Eastern Cleddau, Slebech/Canaston area, or between the Eastern Cleddau and the Carmarthenshire border.  It seems likely that the small breeding population that is becoming established in this part of Pembrokeshire is derived from a feral population that was originally introduced by wildfowlers in the Kidwelly area, Carmarthenshire.

The breeding population is small, and is not thought to more than 3-6 pairs. Greylag Geese are, however, opportunistic colonisers, utilising farm reservoirs and large ponds with islands as nest sites, with grazing close-by.  Limiting factors on future range expansion are likely to include availability of suitable nest sites, an ultimately finite resource over which Greylag Geese could conceivably come into competition with a rapidly expanding Canada Goose population.

Jane Hodges

Rees, et al. 2008, Atlas of Breeding Birds in Pembrokeshire 2003-07. Pembrokeshire Bird Group.

More about the Greylag Goose in Pembrokeshire

Greylag Goose – 1994

Anser anser – GWYDD WYLLT – Erratic visitor. Not recorded from July to September

Lockley et al. (1949) noted two shot at Pont Clew in January 1911, one taken at Orielton Decoy in 1914 and one seen at Milford Haven on 13 December 1930. Greylags have been recorded in 16 of the years since, mainly after 1972, often as single birds but occasionally in groups of up to 20 and mostly between December and February. Feral populations of Greylags have been widely established in Britain by wildfowlers during this period, the nearest being at Kidwelly, Carmarthenshire. This may well have been the origin of many of the Pembrokeshire records. However, small parties seen passing our headlands and islands during October and November are likely to have been wild birds from Iceland.

Donovan J.W. & Rees G.H, 1994, Birds of Pembrokeshire

More about the Greylag Goose in Pembrokeshire

Greylag Goose

Anser anser – GWYDD WYLLT – naturalised resident

Greylag Goose – 2003-07 breeding

Anser anser – GWYDD WYLLT – naturalised resident Comparison with previous atlas: 1984-88 2003-07 Breeding confirmed 1 Breeding probable 2 Breeding possible 2 No of tetrads occupied 0 5 (of 490) Percentage of tetrads 1% Greylags have been a regular winter visitors to the county since 1972, and are thought to be derived from feral […]

Greylag Goose – 1994

Anser anser – GWYDD WYLLT – Erratic visitor. Not recorded from July to September Lockley et al. (1949) noted two shot at Pont Clew in January 1911, one taken at Orielton Decoy in 1914 and one seen at Milford Haven on 13 December 1930. Greylags have been recorded in 16 of the years since, mainly after 1972, […]

Greylag Goose – 1980s winter

Anser anser – GWYDD WYLLT – Erratic visitor. Not recorded from July to September The BTO winter atlas showed that Greylag Geese were present in two 10km squares during the winters of 1981-82, 1982-82 and 1983-84, presumed birds of feral origin. More about the Greylag Goose in Pembrokeshire