Monday, April 25, 2016

How I Accidentally Stumbled Upon a Goose Nest

I enjoy walking (almost) daily with our 7 year old, 85 pound, perpetual puppy, Gibbs. He prances along the side of the road, ears flapping, with a huge grin on his face.


He always insists on leading the way and setting the pace. Our path takes us past a small pond. Last spring and summer, a pair of Canada geese made this pond their home. Eventually, five or six goslings joined them. This spring, the pair of geese returned. Naturally, Gibbs is curious and veers towards them, wanting to check them out.


                                                                                                           


About two and a half weeks ago, we were walking by the pond when one of the geese hissed at him, which was unusual. A few days later, both geese were hissing and honking loudly when we neared them. That is when I spied their nest of eggs hidden on the bank of the pond beside a tree! This nest is less than 6 feet from the road. 

                         
                           
You probably wouldn't notice if you weren't looking for it or being hissed at by two angry geese. Now that we know about the nest (and given that geese are aggressive defenders), we walk on the other side of the road keeping a safe distance. 

The goose is most often calmly sitting on her nest craning her neck to peer out at us while the gander is usually feeding or standing guard in a nearby lawn.


We typically encounter squirrels and deer on our walks. Occasionally, we'll see a hawk, a woodpecker, or mourning doves. Last week while walking the same way, I heard a rustling noise in the woods and expected to see a deer. At first glance, I thought it was a dog. Instead, I realized that it was a fox who was barking sharply at us! With my heart thumping, Gibbs and I quickly headed to the opposite side of the road. Thankfully, the fox ran off in another direction, away from us and the nest of goose eggs. 

I am hoping to be able to safely take more pictures when the goslings hatch in the next week or two!


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