Red-Breasted Geese (Branta Ruficollis) are striking geese with delicate rounded heads, their tiny bills are ideally suited for grazing on very short grass and breaking off brittle stems. Lengthened black nape feathers from indistinct manes that cause their short neck to appear disproportionately thick. Their repeated, squeaky, cackles are somewhat comparable to high-pitched musical laughter, and feeding flocks are vociferous and quarrelsome. They walk with grace and poise and feed with rapid jerky movements throughout the day in rolling stubble fields, pastures and crops. They are swift and agile on the wing. Flocks begin the northward passage in March, but the diminutive geese do not reach their breeding areas until June, when laying may be delayed by late snow and ice. Nesting in a relatively restricted almost inaccessible sector of Siberia, the geese favor moss and lichen-covered tundra and scrubby wooded terrain. Pairs seek high, dry sites on steep river banks, ravine cliffs, low rocky crags and gullies. Normally breeding in small colonies of 3-8 pairs, as many as 15-20 pairs congregate on lake islands or steep banks. Red-Breasted Geese (Branta Ruficollis) nest too late in the season for their progeny to benefit from the spring growth of high-protein vegetation, and these are possibly the only geese whose young are greatly dependent on animal prey. Goslings hatching from nests above rivers commonly tumble head over heels down steep gullies to reach the water below. Their compressed breeding cycle is completed in a short 70-80 days, with young airborne in just over a month, the shorter fledging period of any goose. In mid to late September, Red-Breasted Geese (Branta Ruficollis) commence migrating south through the western Siberian Plain. The geese suffer setbacks during severe winters, when large numbers occasionally perish in heavy snowfalls.