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The snow geese population at Middle Creek topped out over the past few days around 105,000 birds, the highest population seen so far this season.
“However, we received more than half a foot of snow over (Sunday) night and that amount of precipitation might cause the birds to move away from Middle Creek to locations that have snow free fields where they can feed,” said Middle Creek manager Lauren Ferreri in the update.
As of Monday, the following counts were shared:
- Snow Geese: 105,000
- Tundra Swans: 5,000
- Canada Geese: 3,000
Ferreri noted, “It’s hard to say what the majority of the birds will do from here, they could move south or north depending on where they can find food.”
If you can’t make it yourself before the geese continue on their journey, you can also check out the livestream. If you’ve already been watching, or have visited yourself, the Game Commission advised not to be surprised if numbers are lower today. The best time to visit is dawn or dusk.
Here’s what the spectacle looks like in full force, thanks to a photo by LebTown reader Michael Bachelda.
Last year, the high count for snow geese was recorded on February 21 with 200,000 snow geese. The high count for tundra swans was 5,500 (February 22) and 7,500 Canada geese (February 15). In 2017, the peak snow geese population recorded was 70,000+ on February 22.
The Game Commission says that icing is the most significant variable determining the arrival of migrating waterfowl. Snow cover and ice buildup limit access to the waste grain that the waterfowl depend on for food.
The Middle Creek interior tour road is now open as well, providing another opportunity for viewing the birds’ habitat.
Watch this video for more on Middle Creek and the Snow Goose Migration.