The Watering Hole; Thursday May 14 2015; Of Geese and Goofs

The day was Monday, May 11, 2015. Springtime, right? I was up early, and when I first looked out the window this is what I saw: the endpoint of an overnight snowstorm, some five, maybe six inches of heavy wet stuff. Looked like the middle of January out there, and certainly not like a happy time for springtime’s nesting bird life. Early AM snow May 11 1161A few hours later the temp had climbed into the low forties, and the clouds had begun to break up, revealing this view of the Front Range where, according to reports, as much as two feet of snow had fallen. Mojada breaking clouds 1181The following day, the PM temps returned to the low seventies where they typically reside this time of year. That afternoon, we decided to take a walk around the local lake, see if we could again spot the Canadian Goose family that had been busily exploring its corner of the lake during the week before the storms came.  The photo below was taken on May third, very near the day the goslings first left the nest to explore their new world. Goose family 1126So on Tuesday the twelfth we returned to their corner of the world and eventually spotted the mating pair of Canadians (Branta canadensis) relaxing near the shore of a small island that lies about a hundred yards out. They were, as usual, in the company of the only remaining pair of Chinese geese (Anser anser domesticus) in the lake’s current goose colony. 4 geese 1183In the photo above, note the absence of goslings — they were nowhere to be seen, which is most unusual as the days approach the middle of May. Where were they? Normally if they were nearby, either the Canadian mating pair or the Chinese geese would be supervising, watching carefully. Such was clearly not the case, so the first assumption was that something had gone awry. Were they victims of the sudden snowstorm? The recent weather had certainly been goofy enough to be assumed a possible threat to days-old chicks. Or maybe a fox stopped by? Or a cougar? Dog? Feral cat? Take your pick. One thing I did notice — later in the day while reviewing the above photo — was what appeared to be a battle wound of some sort on the neck of the white Chinese goose: Chinese goose neck injury 1183Chinese geese are a popular domestic breed, well-known to be an efficient watchdog that is typically very noisy when anything unusual is around. In this local semi-wild setting, the two of them are always and invariably in the company of their Canadian ‘friends.’ They are, in fact, extremely protective of Canadian goslings. They seem to watch from a distance, but whenever another critter pops up in the neighborhood (humans included) they immediately start honking loudly as they hurry over to offer whatever help might be needed. My first glance at the neck wound above, therefore, definitely made me wonder if maybe the goslings had indeed “gotten got” by one or another of our furry critter locals. The odds against them being somewhere — even in the nest — unsupervised are quite high. Dare we hope? In any case, time will tell if they’re still around or gone for good. We do intend to keep a close eye on the situation and will report back if anything happens to pop up.

Meanwhile, back to the human world where the idiocy continues unabashed, as evidenced in these few recent headlines:

Poll: One-Third Of Republicans Think Obama Wants To Invade Texas

Conservative Pundit: ‘Major Outbreak Of Violence’ Against Obama Administration Imminent

And finally, this absolute GEM!

Beck: Free Community College Is A Government Plot To Enslave People Through Student Loan Debt



47 thoughts on “The Watering Hole; Thursday May 14 2015; Of Geese and Goofs

  1. Come out, come out wherever you are goslings!

    Reading and writing of young:
    The downtown/urban Peregrine falcons:
    • 3 eggs
    • 3 hatch
    • 3 healthy juveniles just fledged!

    A few crows and a pair of blackbirds harassed one fledgling juvenile who ended up on the ground.
    (flying is innate, the landings need the practice)
    The grounded bird was boxed and sent up to the roof of City Hall.
    All three females are in safe spots for the night.

  2. The Beck link is a repeat of the “Major Outbreak of Violence” one.
    Sad about the goslings.

    • Scott Walker and his staff “add” nothing to the quality of the Republican politic, either. It remains where it’s always been, at -8(XY^n) — (where X = number of elected Republicans nationwide, Y = average Republican IQ, and n = number of registered Republican voters in the US).

    • Could it be that Wankker’s staff is 100 years ahead of their time? If so, let’s get the time machine out and send them back (or ahead) to there.

  3. Russ Feingold Announces Rematch Senate bid Against Ron Johnson in 2016

    Democrat Russ Feingold announced Thursday morning his long-expected bid to win back his US Senate seat from Ron Johnson, the Republican who defeated him in 2010.


    In a poll taken last month by the Marquette University Law School, Feingold led Johnson 54% to 38%.

    In 2010, Johnson defeated Feingold, 52% to 47%.

    That’s the best news so far this week.

  4. Under A New Bill, The U.S. Would Get Nearly A Third Of Its Energy From Renewable Sources

    An analysis published Tuesday by the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) supports the New Mexican senators’ statements. In examining the impacts of a 30 percent renewable energy by 2030 national RES, the researchers found that renewable energy generation would be 57 percent higher than business as usual by 2030, and that it would save consumers a total of $25.1 billion on electricity and natural gas bills from 2015-2030.

    The report also found that local economies would benefit in a number of ways. A national RES would drive $294 billion in cumulative new capital investments over the next 15 years — $106 billion more than under a business-as-usual scenario. It would also provide $2.6 billion in cumulative property taxes received by local governments from 2015-2030 and generate $830 million in cumulative wind power land lease payments to rural landowners over that same time frame.

    According to UCS, the national RES would also put a significant dent in domestic power sector carbon dioxide emissions, which are responsible for nearly 40 percent of of total U.S. carbon dioxide emissions.

    I’m assuming that each of the projected benefits give Republicans one more reason to vote the proposal down. The Kochs are not invested in or interested in renewable energy, after all.

    • We need to nationalize our electrical power grid before the Kochs and their Ilk buy into the electricity-producing business and cry because they’re going to be out of a job. Also, private industry will make damn sure it doesn’t save the average consumer a penny. I predict ALL of the savings will go to the 1%.

    • An obvious communist plot to bestow a new world order, where all would be forced to worship either the sun, the wind, or the tides. Oh, and Obama (possibly with a bone through his nose) also obviously the high priest of this heretical pagan savagery.

      • My conspiracy theory for the day is that he is setting up a scenario where Dems can run against his record in 2016. If nothing else; it would make it fun to watch the rightwhiners splutter and stutter when Dems come out saying “this is why I disagree with Obama”.

    • Near as I can tell, all the Canadians around here nest on the handful of small islands in the lake. The nearest rooftops are a long way — to a gosling hoofing it — from the water, so I doubt a ‘normal’ mating pair would make that choice (if there are Republican geese, however . . . well, you know).

      Anyway, I applaud MacNeill’s solution! Cool dude, that one.

      • We have witnessed geese nesting on buildings before. Those ones in the video I believe have been there before!

        • They are intelligent and grateful for assistance from caring Canadians!
          Thanks for the video.

          Wood ducks nest in tree hollows and the ducklings have to drop to the ground before making their way, with Mum of course, to the water source.

  5. What a relief!

    Steve King: There Is No Anti-Muslim Discrimination In America

    Ummm . . . wait. Sum Ting Wong, maybe.

    Iowa talk radio host Jan Mickelson played King a clip of (Jeh) Johnson’s remarks at a February summit on violent extremism, asking incredulously, “So the guy that we put in charge of homeland security thinks that it’s his job as chief of the homeland security to give voice to Muslims while calling Islam the religion of peace?”

    “This is just appalling to think that the man who’s in charge of protecting Americans domestically would take a position like that, Jan,” King responded.

    “The president can dredge up his Crusader history and try to leverage that back against us to guilt us,” he said, referring to President Obama’s remarks at the National Prayer Breakfast, “but what’s this discrimination that’s going on against Muslims in this country? I’m not seeing it. I mean, they’re beheading Christians on the shores of the Mediterranean Sea, and some people are speaking ill of that component. So where are the moderate Muslims speaking up?”

    We need to behead some, I guess, before the word “discrimination” has any useful meaning?

    • Too bad we can’t have anti-Idiot discrimination. Then Steve King (Idiot IA) wouldn’t be allowed to pontificate on dumb shit like this.

  6. Ted Cruz says that the Democratic Party has “gotten so extreme and so radical in its devotion to mandatory gay marriage that they’ve decided there’s no room for the religious liberty protected under the First Amendment.”

    Seems to me that Democratic support of equality for everyone — absolute non-discrimination — is a whole lot more a basic right than is “religious liberty” — esp. when “religious liberty” is used as a tool to allow hate, fear, and discrimination against anything or anyone who might not answer to a given set of religious beliefs. Is Cruz nuts, or am I way off base?

    • mandatory gay marriage? Srsly Teddy Bare?
      That’s like saying Republicans favor gun freedumbs so parents can have their children shoot them.

    • Has anyone seen anything where xtians where banned from going to church? Me neither, FU TED.

    • From Obama phones to Obama watches.
      What a beautiful world it will be!

    • Sure, I’ll trust my health to a damn watch application!
      I’m certain it can adjust my meds as needed.///
      BabyBoyBush II is as divorced from reality as his brother.

  7. Gosling update:
    Visited the lake today and once again found ma and pa Canadian lounging on the shore along with their two Chinese friends. But no little ones. A half-hour later we ran across Woody the Goose Guy (he’s been adopted by the two Chinese critters, so every afternoon he brings them a bag of dried corn which they eat from his hand). Anyway, we asked Woody if he’d seen the goslings, and he had — but a little more than a week ago. We told him we were pretty close to convinced they were gone.

    An hour later, a horn beeped in our driveway. It was Woody stopping to report that he’d finally spotted the three little ones! They’re still around! Apparently ma and pa had secreted them on their island when the weather turned to crap, finally brought them out late this afternoon. All’s well. 😀

    • That is wonderful! How very nice of Woody to let you know he found them!
      Huzzah for Woody the Goose Guy!

  8. I know you’re all disappointed that John Bolton announced today that he would not seek the 2016 nomination. For President, in case you were wondering.

  9. Pingback: “Difficult standards for people to live up to.” | Frugalchariot's Blog

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