Among the white-fronted geese, there are still plenty of forest and tundra geese. Tundra geese can be distinguished from forest geese, for example, by the white forehead shield. Photo: Kitee 1.5.2023, Jari Kontiokorpi / North Karelia Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment

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Thousands of barnacle geese have arrived in Finland during their spring migration, and they are expected to stay there until winter retreats from their Arctic breeding grounds. While cold weather in the coming days may slow down the migration process, the situation is expected to change next week. The majority of the geese are located in the eastern part of the country, but sightings have also been reported in southern and northern regions.

The geese, including forest and tundra geese, are being monitored by several organizations, including BirdLife Finland and the North Karelia Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment.

The migration of barnacle geese in Finland is progressing at a fast pace, and although the numbers are still in the four digits, it is estimated that over one-third of the Arctic breeding population is already in Finland, Sweden, and especially Estonia. The migration has been occurring daily, with both incoming and domestic movement. Although the majority of sightings have been in the eastern regions of Finland, there have been sightings of over a thousand geese in southern and northern Karelia.

While the cold weather in the coming days may slow down the migration process, the situation is expected to change next week, according to a migration forecast by Jarmo Koistinen, a researcher at the Finnish Meteorological Institute. A cold northern airflow with nighttime frosts and possible snow showers is expected to give way to a slow-moving high-pressure system approaching from the west. The wind and visibility are expected to be favorable for the barnacle geese, allowing them to continue their migration from the Netherlands, Denmark, and the Baltic region to Finland. However, the cold weather may also slow down the growth of green grass, which could affect the migration of the geese in southern and southeastern Finland.

Several organizations, including BirdLife Finland and the North Karelia Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment, are monitoring the migration of barnacle geese. They are using bird watching services such as Tiira and migration weather forecasts from the Finnish Meteorological Institute, as well as the tracking of GPS transmitter geese to monitor their movements. Overall, the arrival of thousands of barnacle geese in Finland is an important event for birdwatchers and conservationists, who are studying the migration patterns and habitats of these magnificent birds.

HT

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