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Spring babies are just around the corner

March 31, 2008

by Jennifer Gallus

Spring, in my mind, is definitely here. It may not look like it outside, but the birds are back, I’ve spotted many robins perching in the trees, and my geese are laying eggs!

The presence of the Pilgrim geese on our farm remains a sore spot between my husband and I. He says this is the year to get rid of them, and I may actually go through with finding them another home for several reasons.

Although I really enjoy them, and the noises they make, I’m really only attached to Petey. He’s been humorous from the beginning.

Petey is very sweet to me, but almost downright nasty to others. Just last night, while my 7-year-old and I were doing chores, Petey attacked my little guy twice.

The first attack was uneventful and my son warded the crazy goose off successfully, but the second attack left him with a bruise on the leg. If my son stays by my side while in the goose pen, nothing happens, but if he wanders off just a little, Petey takes notice and advantage.

The geese have taken over my “baby duck” pen, because it’s the only fenced in area on our farm, and they have to be fenced or they will mosey up to our sidewalk and make a huge mess.

However, if I’m around during the day to shoo them away from the house, they can be free to roam. I’m not home as much as I’d like to be, so the geese, in turn, are locked up more than I’d like them to be. I don’t think that’s fair to them, either.

They love to forage and snoop around. They will spend most the of day walking around, checking out everything and eating greens.

They are currently laying massive eggs, and I’m so excited for them to hatch out their babies. But, on the other hand, I’m sad because I know I will need to find all of them homes this spring.

However, I will have much more room to expand my Australian Spotted duck stock, and my baby ducks will again be in a safe, fenced area, which is something I had to give up to the geese.

Several times last spring, I took ducklings, alive and well – but slimy, from out of the mouth of my golden retriever. He just wants to play with them, but if given the chance, he will play with them to death – the duckling’s death!

I guess I’ll just wait and see what shakes out this spring, and if I can find a suitable new home for my geese. I think this column has served some kind of group therapy purpose this week!

Kid-isms

On Easter morning, my 7-year-old got dressed to go to grandpa and grandma’s house in camouflage pants with ripped knees. I told him he couldn’t wear that on Easter, and he said, “Mom, we’re farmers. Farmers wear pants with holes.”