Today I had the opportunity to walk with a gaggle of geese. There were quite a few of them walking around at Springhill Park in Barling, Arkansas.
I once asked my 7-year-old niece, “What do you call one goose?”
“Geese!” she said.
Then I asked, “Then what do you call more than one moose?”
She said, “Meese!”
Anyway, back to the park. And the geese. The way I was able to get a little closer than normal (about 30ft away) was that as I walked forward, I waddled and made sure that I spoke or made a little noise. This let them know that I was near and that they had nothing to fear. It’s not that I knew what I was doing, but it seemed to work and that gave me the ability to take captures a little closer.
Oh, their behavior was very interesting. The males lifted their heads up high and gave me “the EYE.” They seemed to warn me that they would walk away and give me blurry shots. That worked because I then made sure I stayed a good social distance away from them. Well, the behavior I found most interesting was that as long as the female knew her man was there to protect her, she had not a care in the world. In fact, she would just lay there as if there wasn’t some guy with a camera, wearing a brace in pajamas waddling through the grass trying to get the perfect capture. She was at perfect peace. Only when the male was a little anxious and he gave the signal that it was time to leave, did she even rise from her position. By the way, the signal is holding up three feathers on each wing and saying the word, “Rosebud.” Naw, just kidding, well, that’s what I heard.
INTERESTING CANADA GOOSE FACES FROM NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC
“AVERAGE LIFE SPAN IN THE WILD: 24 years”
“When the birds do migrate, they form impressive and aerodynamic “V-formations.” They can cover 1,500 miles in just 24 hours with a favorable wind, but typically travel at a much more leisurely rate.”