WOW! I think I had almost as wild a day Sunday (yesterday) as Mother Goose and her 4 chicks did!
Holes started appearing in some of the eggs on Friday afternoon as the goslings starting pecking away trying to get out. I contacted Ray Saint Germain, our Senior Multimedia Producer, who set up the fantastic video cam that allowed us all to watch Mother Goose sitting on her eggs these last weeks, and alerted him about the holes. We both planned to monitor the nest via his cam over the weekend.
In the past, Mother Goose has always waited about a day after the last eggs hatched before coaxing her goslings off the rooftop and over to the office park pond next to our building. I figured we had until Monday before they jumped, but would keep an eye out to make sure.
By the end of Saturday, 4 chicks had hatched and it was starting to look like the last 3 eggs probably weren’t viable. Last year, 2 of her eggs didn’t hatch, so I wasn’t all that surprised.
Sunday morning, about 8:30 a.m., the 3 eggs had still not hatched. It usually takes a day or two before instinct kicks in and Mom Goose realizes the eggs are no good and it’s OK to leave the nest, so I figured she’d jump with her chicks on Monday. Nope. When I checked my computer a few minutes later, Mother Goose and her 4 chicks were gone and it was just an empty nest with 3 eggs! YIPE!
I ran out, jumped in my car and raced to the Times about 17 miles away. I ran upstairs and looked out the window to make sure they weren’t just hiding in a corner of the roof. Nope. All gone. So I ran back downstairs and out the door and through the parking lot, following the route Mother Goose has taken every year over the last 5 years.
I caught up with them as they were almost to the office park next door. Father Goose had joined up with Mom and the kids. There is a nice artificial creek in the office park that meanders through the buildings and a nice little lagoon that Mother Goose uses to raise her chicks every year. I walked alongside, escorting them the rest of the way. They all, goslings included, started grazing on the lawn grass when they reached it, then down to the water for a little paddle. The goslings made a nice little flotilla in the creek, escorted with mom and dad on each side.
Then I jumped in my car and raced home again. In all the excitement and rush, I’d forgotten to bring my camera!
When I returned, I took the pictures you see here. A long, hard freaking day, but they all lived happily ever after. Even the stupid human who figured they weren’t even going to think about doing this until Monday. Idiot. Proving once again, by the way, that Canada geese are lots smarter than us humans.
It was still a happy day, you know. Ray Saint Germain and I have now become uncles to about 34 baby geese over the last 6 years. HONK! HONK! /Gary