The Uncanny Intelligence of Geese

I live near a park with a small lake--really, just a man-made pond--that is alive with waterfowl, squirrels and turtles. Every year a flock of Canadian geese come back to the park. One couple each year will mate and have babies. It's fun to watch the babies grow up. At first they are all brown and fuzzy and eventually, those feathers give way to the distinctive brown-black and white markings of the adult Canadian geese. This year there were seven babies born to one very smart couple. I say smart because they obviously realized seven is a lot to keep safe from predators so they enlisted the services of two other geese who are regulars in the park. One is a large white goose and the other is an even larger African goose. They've been hanging out in the park for years. And now they act as surrogate parents or body guards for the seven babies.

Before I realized one Canadian geese couple had given birth, I saw these two non-Canadian geese on the grass, shielding something with their wings while two Canadian geese stood on the walkway warding off passersby. I realized the adult geese were protecting Canadian goslings. Now the whole diverse tribe is inseparable--eating and swimming together like one big happy family.

Well, it makes sense. What else can stressed-out parents do when they have a lot of kids? They hire a couple of baby sitters to make life a easier for them.

 Vanessa A. Ryan is the author of:
Horror At The Lake, A Vampire Tale mystery trilogy:

Book 1, The Legacy Of Fear -- order now  Book 2, The Trail Of Terror -- order now
Book 3, The Blood Of Redemption -- order now
A Palette For Murder - order now

Follow Vanessa A. Ryan at: