The blue-winged goose (Cyanochen cyanoptera) belongs to the Anseriformes order.
External signs of the blue-winged goose.
The blue-winged goose is a large bird ranging in size from 60 to 75 cm. Wingspan: 120 - 142 cm. When the bird is on land, the gray-brown color of its plumage almost merges with the brown background of the environment, which allows it to remain almost invisible. But when the blue-winged goose takes off, the large pale blue spots on the wings become clearly visible, and the bird is easily detected in flight. The goose has a stocky body.
Both male and female in appearance resemble each other. The plumage on the upper side of the body is darker, paler on the forehead and throat. The feathers on the chest and belly are pale in the center, resulting in a rather colorful look.
The tail, legs and small beak are black. The feathers of the wing with a faint metallic green luster and the upper covering wings are light blue. This sign gave rise to the species name of the goose. In general, the plumage of the blue-winged goose is thick and loose, adapted to tolerate low temperatures in the habitat on the Ethiopian Highlands.
Young blue-winged geese look like adults, their wings have a green gloss.
Listen to the voice of the blue-winged goose.//animalreader.ru/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/XC210015-Golubokrylyj-gus-Cyanochen-cyanoptera.mp3 //animalreader.ru/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/XC300234-Golubokrylyj-gus-Cyanochen -cyanoptera.mp3 //animalreader.ru/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/XC305843-Golubokrylyj-gus-Cyanochen-cyanoptera.mp3
Blue-winged goose spread.
The blue-winged goose is an endemic of the highlands of Ethiopia, although it is still a locally distributed species.Blue-winged Goose - Waterfowl
Habitats of the blue-winged goose.
Blue-winged geese are found only on high plateaus in the subtropical or tropical altitudinal zonation, which begins at an altitude of 1,500 meters and rises to 4,570 meters. Isolation of such places and remoteness from human settlements made it possible to preserve the unique flora and fauna; many species of animals and plants in the mountains are not found anywhere else in the world. Blue-winged geese inhabit rivers, freshwater lakes, reservoirs. During breeding, birds often nest in open Afro-Alpine marshes.Blue-winged Goose (Cyanochen cyanoptera)
Out of season, nesting lives along the banks of mountain rivers and lakes with adjacent meadows with low grass. They are also found on the fringes of mountain lakes, swamps, swamp lakes, streams with abundant pastures. Birds rarely live in overgrown areas and do not risk swimming in deep water. In the central parts of the range, they most often appear at altitudes of 2,000-3,000 meters in areas with swampy black soil. At the northern and southern extremities of the range, they spread at heights with a granite substrate, where the grass is coarser and longer.
The number of blue-winged goose.
The total number of blue-winged geese is in the range from 5000 to 15000 individuals. However, it is believed that due to the loss of places suitable for breeding, there is a decrease in numbers. Due to the loss of habitat, the number of sexually mature individuals is actually less and ranges from 3000-7000, a maximum of 10500 rare birds.
Features of the behavior of the blue-winged goose.
Blue-winged geese are mostly a settled species of birds, but exhibit some small seasonal vertical movements. In the dry season from March to June, they occur in separate pairs or small groups. Little is known about reproductive behavior due to nightlife. In the wet period, blue-winged geese do not breed and stay at lower heights, where sometimes they gather in large enough, free flocks of 50-100 individuals.
A particularly high concentration of rare geese is observed in Areket and on the flat terrain during rains and the after-rain period, as well as in the mountains in the National Park, where blue-winged geese nest in the wet months from July to August.
This species of Anseriformes feeds mainly at night, and during the day the birds hide in the dense grass. Blue-winged geese fly and swim well, but prefer to live on land, where food is more accessible. In their habitat they behave extremely quietly and do not betray their presence. Males and females make a soft whistle, but do not blow or gaggle like other types of geese.
Blue-winged goose feeding.
Blue-winged geese are mainly herbivores, grazing on forbs. They eat seeds of sedge and other herbaceous vegetation. However, the diet contains worms, insects, insect larvae, freshwater mollusks, and even small reptiles.
Reproduction of the blue-winged goose.
Blue-winged geese nest on the ground among vegetation. This little-known species of geese builds a lined nest among bunches of grass, which perfectly conceals the masonry. The female lays 6-7 eggs.
The reasons for the decrease in the number of blue-winged goose.
For a long time it was believed that the number of blue-winged geese was threatened by the hunting of local people for birds. However, recent reports have shown that locals set traps and catch geese for sale to the country's growing Chinese population. On a site in the vicinity of the Gefersa Reservoir, 30 km west of Addis Ababa, previously numerous populations of blue-winged geese are now becoming scarce.
This species is under pressure from the outside due to the rapidly growing human population, as well as drainage and degradation of wetlands and meadows, which are affected by anthropogenic factors.
Intensification of agriculture, drainage of swamps, overgrazing and periodic droughts also pose potential threats to the habitat of the species.Blue-winged Goose - Ethiopian endemic
Actions to preserve the blue-winged goose.
No specific measures are taken to conserve the blue-winged goose. The main nesting places for the blue-winged goose are located within the Bale National Park. The Ethiopian organization for the protection of fauna and flora of this region is making efforts to preserve the species diversity of this region, but environmental protection is ineffective due to hunger, civil unrest and military operations. In the future, it is necessary to identify the main breeding sites of blue-winged geese, as well as other vital non-breeding areas and create protection for threatened species.
Monitor regularly at selected sites throughout the range to determine trends in abundance. Conduct bird movement research using radio telemetry to study additional bird habitats. Conduct information activities and control the shooting.
The conservation status of the blue-winged goose.
The blue-winged goose is classified as a vulnerable species, and is considered rarer than previously thought. This species of birds is threatened by loss of habitat. Threats to the habitat of the blue-winged goose, and other species of flora and fauna of the Ethiopian Highlands, have ultimately increased as a result of the phenomenal growth of the local population in Ethiopia in recent years. Eighty percent of the population living in highlands uses large areas for agriculture and livestock. It is therefore not surprising that the habitat has been severely affected and has undergone catastrophic changes.