It's hard to remember that there was a time when these birds were close to being extinct, causing great apprehension and sadness for everyone. All that's best in humanity surged forth, good well meaning people started frantically "saving" the black and white big birds; the geese probably couldn't believe their sudden survival luck, and responded with passionate reproductive joy.
A 20-year study from 1983 to 2003 in Wichita, Kansas, found the size of the winter Canada goose population within the city limits increased from 1,600 to over 18,000 birds. Worldwide, it's hard to assess the numbers. Let's just say, there are lots of them!
Those geese are quick learners, and love luxury vacations just like their human snowbird counterparts in Canada. They don't believe in suffering through the cold Canadian winters, so off they go, winging south without a care in the world. No packing, passports, customs and immigration officers for them, no sirree! The choice of luxury parks and golf courses are theirs; no mucking about, they fly direct!
What goes in must come out
Did you know a single goose defecates every 20 minutes? The quantity of
excreta (poo) per goose is 2-3 lbs per day. That's a lot, when you consider how it adds up to several tons per year. Unfortunately these social birds travel in flocks of many, and there isn't anyone with a pooper scooper to clean up after them! Forget the picnics on the grass where the Brantas have walked!
Don't mess with me!
You need to be wary if they're anywhere around too, because they've learned to be aggressive beggars, and will chase you if you don't come forth with the food. Actually, they're very territorial, and quite dangerous. There've been many cases of goose attacks.
You know when spring or fall seasons have arrived in North America when you're out in the garden, and suddenly hear hundreds of excited goose honking voices. You look up, and sure enough, there's the V formation, and the spectacular sight of those strong birds, way up there in the sky, flying to their favorite haunts.
It seems a shame, but airlines and pilots don't like these feathered friends. There've unfortunately been several goose "strikes", with resulting horrific accidents and deaths, in a couple of cases an entire plane load of people have been lost. These have occurred in full flight, but airports also have to resort to dogs trained to chase the birds before take off and landings. It's quite a dangerous and ever present peril for pilots and passengers.
Municipalities all over the world are now denouncing our Canada Geese. They say there are just too many of them. Some have resorted to "harvesting" or "culling" them in various ways. In Oregon the municipality "harvested" 104 of them and fed them to homeless folks. Others have programs for finding their nests and shaking the eggs, so that they can't hatch. The latter seems to be the least controversial method of population control, but the rise in numbers continues.
To lend a bit better light on how smart and emotionally sensitive geese are, here's a brief and lovely video for you to enjoy sent obviously through mental telepathy by my friend, Kay Jaeck. I hadn't shared with anyone about this goose 'spin!"
Just keep in mind, this isn't a Canada Goose! Just sayin'...
Dominic & Maria, a guy and his goose
And about the Canada Geese - are you pro or con where they're concerned?
Thanks for the read and wishing you a safe and beautiful weekend!