When I started this blog, my intention was to pass on information that I have learned through my life living in a hospital with a sick husband. Since then, my blog really hasn’t been about anything.
Today however, I am going to educate: about Geese.
My husband called them flying rats.
I really thought he was being extreme.
Little did I know that he was speaking the truth.
Before we had a pond, I really hadn’t encountered geese. They pass over head in the spring and fall; going to parts unknown, honking all the way. I thought they were kind of cool. To me it signified the beginning of spring and the end of summer.
Then we had a dam built and our pond filled up with water. I build my little beach, put out my chairs and the geese came. They shit everywhere. Now if you are offended by the word shit, please quit reading right now.
They loved my beach. They ate the sand to help digest whatever it is that they eat. And it was really a great place for them to walk ashore without climbing through the weeds. And as they ate the sand it immediately came out the other end.
I was shocked by the amount of shit that came out of their bodies. It’s like having a cold and blowing your nose for days and wondering where all that snot comes from. Yep, geese poop is the same.
My husband and I had done a pretty good job of scaring off the geese, until the year we had to put my mother-in-law in a nursing home. Neither one of us had been around much. I had been working a lot and he had been spending time with his mother because she couldn’t take care of herself. The night that the decision was made to put her in a nursing home we came home to geese on the pond. Three sets of geese. I said “Terry, go scare those geese away!”
A minute later I hear BOOM (a gunshot)! I go flying out the door. “What are you doing!!!!???”
“I am scaring the geese away” He replied. As we stood there looking at the pond, the three sets of geese returned and landed quietly back in the pond.
“Hmmm, doesn’t look like you scared them at all.” I turned and went back in the house.
BOOM! Another gun shot. I look out the window to see the birds fly off to the south. Good, I am thinking to myself. I yell at my husband “Don’t shoot them!”
Five minutes later I look out and here are the three sets of geese peacefully swimming on the pond. I turn my back.
BOOM! OH MY GOSH! I look out and there in the water is a dead goose. I take off toward the pond! “Why did you shoot the goose?” I yell!
“I didn’t mean to! It just got in my way!”
“Put your waders on and go fish that goose out of the pond! We should probably eat it or something!”
He (I am sure) had some choice words to say to me, but he went down and got the goose and cleaned it and put it in the freezer. The evening never got any better and the next four days were awful.
First of all, geese mate for life. The other two sets of geese flew away. But the one remaining partner stayed. HONK, HONK, HOOONK. He/She cried for days. It was horrible. We woke up to that and went to bed to that. We tried to scare it off, but it didn’t care, it was heartbroken.
Day Five, I looked at my husband and said “Shoot the other one and put it out of its misery.” But I never saw it that day. It may have left or maybe the previous day my husband couldn’t take it any longer and shot it and never told me.
Fast forward to last year. There was a pair of geese swimming around on my pond and in my mind they looked like trouble to me. But by the time I put two and two together I had seven baby geese and two parents swimming on my pond. Oh I know some people are saying “OH but their so cute!”
Then they started growing. Coming ashore and shitting everywhere. My dog would go down and roll in the poop and I would have to wash her off. It was a daily occurrence. I was going crazy. I would run at them screaming. I would drive my mower full bore towards them. I know my neighbors thought I was nuts.
Then one day, when I was screaming and waving my arms and chasing them on my mower; they took off into the sky. I seriously had a moment of pride thinking that I had a hand in teaching them to fly. Getting away from the crazy lady was their inspiration. I was so happy to see them go. The parents didn’t come back last year and neither did the babies. (Thank God).
This year, I had a dozen or so geese land on my pond daily. I told my younger daughter and she bought me a 3D Coyote and put it out on the peninsula. It actually worked for a little bit, most of the geese left. But then I saw this pair of geese swimming on the pond, looking pretty comfortable in their little world. I figure its Mom and Dad from last year.
The mom disappeared a week ago. So Lucy (my dog) and I walked around the pond. I didn’t see the goose or her nest. And I know that if she were dead the male would be crying. But no, he is just swimming around like a proud parent. Two days ago I found the nest. Right next to my windmill!
Seven eggs. Crap, I thought to myself. I am going to have to throw these eggs into the weeds. But all I can think about is their reaction. Are they going to cry and mourn the loss of their babies?
I have to toss these damn geese eggs, thinking of the amount of shit that they produce.
I pondered my decision. I thought about how I would dispose of the geese eggs. I have these long purple rubber gloves that I use when I am pulling things out of my overflow. We have had big turtles get caught in there and there is nothing worse than grabbing something unidentifiable and pulling it to the surface. I really like my rubber gloves. Then I had to get my mind ready; thinking about picking up the eggs and tossing them across the pond to the other side. Far, far away from the nest.
I had finally reconciled this all in my mind when I drove into my driveway and here was a young man (son of a close friend) fishing at the pond. He was headed toward the house and I said “Hey! Can you do me a favor? Did you see the goose nest down there?”
“Yes” he said.
“Could you go throw the eggs into the weeds on the other side of the pond for me?”
I woke up yesterday to the mama goose swimming with her head under water. “Did she think they got lost in the pond?”
Today I woke up to . . . NO GEESE. Happy Dance!
Moral of the Story: Always get someone else to do your dirty work.
And Reality: Geese shit a lot, scare the damn things away.
Epilogue: Terry took the frozen goose to a wild game feed and it was made into amazing bacon wrapped goose kabobs. I enjoyed it immensely. So did Terry.