Carew Castle is a Medieval structure that is a local tourist attraction. I’m not much into human history, so won’t say much about it here. However, it is a good place for natural history, being an important bat roost for several species at various times of year, it has barn owls, a colony of jackdaws, and a lot more.

The adjacent Millpond is good for birds, particularly gulls. But anything could turn up there.

Today’s attraction is a goose. It looks like a Canada Goose, but it has been claimed to be a Cackling Goose (Lesser Canada Goose). This diminutive cousin of the Canada Goose is usually assumed to be an escape from a wildfowl collection, but maybe it could be a genuine wild bird.

As I said, the Cackling Goose is a small goose – dumpy and almost duck-like. Unfortunately, today it was on its own, no other geese or ducks to be seen, never mind close enough for a size comparison.

The Cackling Goose has a somewhat domed head, with a steep forehead, and a relatively small bill. This bird was so far away, that we needed photographs to see this kind of detail. So, yes, perhaps it qualifies.

The other feature is its relative wing length, and that was very hard to judge on a bird that spent most of its time grooming, and inconveniently not giving a clear side-on view.

Next time I come across a small Canada Goose, at least I’ll know what features I should be looking for to ID it.

The goose is on the water’s edge below the left-hand end of the castle.


The eventual consensus amongst local birders was that it was just a small-looking regular Canada Goose. When others joined it on the Millpond, it was pretty much indistinguishable from them.