Tuesday, May 29, 2012
driving down the road recently i saw what i thought was a duck lurking behind some reeds about seventy-five feet away from me in a small marshy pond. the lily pad and tree reflections on almost still water under the light cloud cover of morning sky were stunning. i had the urge to record this beautiful moment so i pulled over and rummaged around for my camera and then realized i had left it at home.
i quickly turned the car around in the next driveway and backtracked to get it, keeping my fingers crossed that during the less-than-ten-minute round trip the wind wouldn't pick up and the muted light would remain and the duck would come out from behind the reeds.
i was in luck. the scene remained the same as when i left it with, however, one notable exception—the duck, which had swum out into the middle of the pond, was in reality a goose, a large male canada goose. how could i have possibly mistaken a goose for a duck? (is it time for new glasses?)
and how, when male and female canada geese are identical except for size, did i know it was a male?
because, upon closer inspection, i observed the unmoving head of another goose behind the tall grasses on the other side of the water, this one obviously sitting on a nest. while a female canada goose incubates the eggs, the male keeps watch—and this guy did a superb job.
he did not take his eyes off me as he swam closer and closer and started to come out of the water. i was afraid of getting hissed and honked at, or even lunged at by this possibly wings a-flapping goose dad, so i took a few more pictures and left him in peace to watch over his mate and the eggs. female geese always return to the area where they were born and unless something happens to one of them, those two will be hanging out together for what i hope is a good, long life.