Sunday, June 17, 2012
The other day at the river, I heard a single goose whose honking grew increasingly louder. I didn't think much of it. Geese don't follow the same aerial roads most other birds follow and they often veer off in some other direction before they get anywhere close to me. But this one's honking kept getting louder until I finally spotted it coming around the bend of trees down river and flying directly toward me. Not one to pass up the opportunity, I started taking photos as it flew closer. As he lowered his landing gear I finally realized it intended on landing right where I was standing. That is, until it realized what I was. Then it veered off and flew a little farther down river to land.
You can see it's wing feathers are in pretty sad condition. They will normally molt their body feathers while they are nesting and their wing feathers separately before migration in the fall. There is no difference in female or male, so there is no telling which this is. Pair bonds usually last through at least one season and this one, being alone, may mean something happened to its mate. Or, perhaps it's mate is taking care of the kids and this one needed some "me time."