Branta bernicla




Ducks, Geese and Swans (Anatidae)

Code 4


Code 6



Egg Color:

Creamy white or buff.

Number of Eggs:

1 - 7

Incubation Days:

22 - 26

Egg Incubator:


Nest Location:

On small island in tundra pond, usually 1 to 5 miles from coast.

Nest Material:

Shallow bowl of grass and other materials lined with down.





Brant: Small goose with dark brown upperparts and brown-barred, pale gray underparts. Head is black; short black neck has partial white ring; small head and short, black bill. Tail and vent are white. Western race, formerly known as the Black Brant, is darker. Sexes are similar; males are slightly larger. Juvenile is darker and lacks white on neck, but has distinctive white edging on wing coverts and scapulars, which are lost after the first molt. Tail feathers may have white tips, and occasionally the primary and median wing coverts as well.

Range and Habitat

Brant: Breeds in eastern Siberia and along the northern coast of Alaska and western Canada; Pacific subspecies spends winters along the west coast from British Columbia to Baja California. Preferred habitats include tundra and coastal islands in the Arctic during breeding, and salt marshes and estuaries during winter.

Breeding and Nesting

Brant: They breed on the coastal tundra.The male cormorant selects the nest site and brings the nesting materials to the female to build the nest. One to seven creamy white to buff eggs are laid in a large nest made of moss and down. Incubation ranges from 22 to 26 days. Parents are bonded for life, and both tend to the nest and the young.

Foraging and Feeding

Brant: These birds feed on grass, sedges, algae, moss, lichens and invertebrates at their breeding grounds. During winter in eastern and central North America, their diet consists mainly of eel-grass found in tidal flats. They usually feed in flocks at low tide when vegetation is accessible; excess vegetation left floating is eaten at high tide. They drink while feeding, bathing or preening.


Brant: Call is a low, hoarse "cronk."

Similar Species

Brant: Canada Goose is larger, longer-necked, paler, and has conspicuous white cheek patch. Other dark geese have white face patches.


Belly, undertail coverts, chest, flanks, and foreneck.

Back, rump, hindneck, wings, and crown.
Short feathers in the area where the bird’s back and wings join.
Birds do not have two separate cavities for excrement and reproduction like humans do. In birds, there is one single entrance/exit that suits both functions called the vent, cloaca or anus.
Wing covertsX
The feathers that cover and protect the flight feathers.
Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X