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Snow geese grazing and wheat coming out of dormancy

Migrating geese grazing late fall planted wheat. March 3, 2021.

Depending on when wheat was planted last fall, plants coming out of dormancy this week will be in Feeks growth stage 1 (rapid leaf development but not yet tilling). Zadoks growth stages 0 through 5 further define individual leaf expression. This field having one collar visible and one other leaf 50% emerging is in Zadokes stage 2.

A study in Scotland (1989) entitled “Damage to winter cereals by grey-lag and pink-footed geese in North-east Scotland” determined that only a small portion of the national flock stopped to graze autumn planted cereal grains in March and April. – Journal of Applied Ecology, 26, 879-895. Accessed on line, March 3, 2021.


For more information on growth stages of wheat see this article by University of Kentucky,