The goslings are beginning to hatch!!
Earlier this spring I noticed an unusual Canada goose (Branta canadensis) pair, the female had a pronounced limp. In an earlier post I showed pictures of what I assumed was the male defending his limping female and territory from another male. About a month later three white eggs were in their nest. Sure enough, now, after another month, there are three goslings. I am so happy this pair managed to hatch their brood.
These three goslings will not have any siblings this year as Canada geese only have one yearly brood. After a 25 to 30 day incubation period goslings are born with yellow down covering their bodies and open eyes. They begin pecking at things almost immediately after hatching. Depending on the weather the hatchlings leave the nest in one or two days and are capable of walking, swimming, feeding and diving. These little guys will grow fast and within about six to seven weeks will be almost as big as the adults. These fuzzy little balls of down will be gangly, brownish teenagers in what seems like only a few days. Usually the youngsters remain with the parents for the first full year.
Many goslings are hatching now. I will shortly share pictures of other families and “nursery groups”. I also hope to share family photos as the goslings grow over the next few weeks. Keep tuned!