The banded goose and other tales

Geese on ice

Geese on ice

Do you remember the banded goose?  (That link takes you to a photo.  If you want to see the original posts regarding the banded goose, they are here, here, and here.)  In case you don’t remember or you’re new here, and you don’t feel like following the links, the basic story is this:  A goose with a band around its neck visited the pond back in January, and I reported the goose to the Bird Banding Laboratory to help with their research as well as to see if I could get any information about the goose.

February 2013 001a

I have not seen the banded goose around the pond lately, but I did finally hear back from the Bird Banding Laboratory (beyond the original acknowledgement of the report).

The Goose version of the Polar Bear Club

The Goose version of the Polar Bear Club

They sent me a nice little certificate of appreciation that includes information about the goose such as its sex, where and when it was hatched, and where it was banded.


(I manipulated it a bit to leave out some of my identifying information.)  It’s fascinating, or at least I think so.  That goose has done a fair bit of traveling.  Nunavut, Canada is part of (most of) the Canadian Arctic Archipelago.  Akimiski Island in James Bay is about 19 km from the province of Ontario.  It’s farther north than M and I traveled when we visited the Canadian Maritimes.  Much farther north.  If interested, you can visit Nunavut Tourism for more information about the area, and check this out to learn more about Akimiski Island.  Akimiski Island is not only a critical stopover for birds of all kinds, but it is also a maternity denning area for polar bears.

February 2013 003a

It’s an icicle day here in the Bogs

After looking around the Nunavut Tourism website, I’ve added it to my places to visit someday.  It looks like a beautiful and intriguing area to explore.

Three drips stopped by the cold

Three drips stopped by the cold

We had a wintry mix of rain and ice and freezing rain this morning.  It eventually changed over to rain.  We didn’t get any of the snow that hit other parts of the Midwest.

The frozen rain looks like tiny diamonds scattered on the ground

The frozen rain looks like tiny diamonds scattered on the ground

My walk around the pond this morning was crunchy and cold.  I still managed to find hints of spring.  It was most apparent in the songs of the birds.  They’re becoming more vocal and the songs seem to have changed over the past week or two.

Someone's home sweet home

Someone’s home sweet home

I even heard a robin singing, although I didn’t see it.  Robins are not really harbingers of spring around here because some do not migrate for the winter months.  Instead, they roost in the forests in huge flocks where we don’t see them as often as when they’re out and about, pulling worms up from the lawn.  The return of the red-winged blackbirds will be a true herald of spring for us.  I haven’t heard or seen any yet.  Last year I wrote about their return on February 23rd.  I’ll have to go out and have a good listen for them tomorrow.

February 2013 025a

That’s about it from the Bogs for today.  Thank you for dropping by and joining me on a short ramble.  The weekend is looking not too bad in terms of weather.  It will be above freezing and we should see some sunshine.  That will be a treat.  It’s been pretty cloudy around here lately.



Have a delightful day, evening, night… whenever and wherever you are on the spectrum of time.  And have a great weekend, too!  I’ll be back on Monday (unless something I absolutely must share with you comes along in the meantime).

More jewels in the grass

More jewels in the grass

Let the beauty we love be what we do.  There are hundreds of ways to kneel and kiss the ground.

~ Rumi

With some added sparkle

With some added sparkle


33 Comments on “The banded goose and other tales”

  1. amuirin says:

    I miss your pictures, so beautiful. You got to know your traveler’s history, that’s cool that they follow up like that.

  2. Stacie says:

    I love the jewels in the grass! Especially the one with fireworks! 🙂

  3. Deborah Lee says:

    That is so cool that you found out where the goose came from. And she’s no spring chicken either. I didn’t realize they lived that long.

  4. Dana says:

    Pretty cool info about that banded goose! She’s definitely been around the block, hasn’t she?

    One of my dream vacations involves going up to Yukon Territory in the winter months. I would *love* to see the Northern Lights (aurora borealis) in their full, freezing glory. Don’t think I could ever adjust to full-time life that far north, though. Not enough sunlight, and definitely not enough fresh vegetables! 🙂

    • Robin says:

      That’s one of my dream vacations too, Dana. I’ve seen a small version of the Northern Lights right here in Ohio, but it was an odd coming together of conditions that aren’t likely to happen often. I agree with you about the sunlight and fresh vegetables! Those are some of my limits too. 🙂

  5. dearrosie says:

    Wow I’m so glad you shared the certificate of appreciation with us Robin. It is fascinating to say the least that a little goose walking about your pond is most probably on her way back to Nunavut in the Canadian arctic! Sheesh it boggles the mind how they do it! And I feel proud that I walked 250 km in Spain…
    Great post. I didn’t see your original post when you found the goose. How did you manage to see the tag on her leg?

    • Robin says:

      The distances birds go is pretty impressive, Rosie. I’d still be proud of that 250 km in Spain. 🙂

      The goose had a large orange band around her neck. When I first saw her, I thought she was something other than a Canada Goose (or a mutation of some kind). Zooming in with the camera, I realized it was a band. It was easy enough to read the numbers once I had the photo up on the computer monitor and could zoom in more.

  6. penpusherpen says:

    Hi there Robin,
    it’s just great to be back… I’m just taking a deep breath, inhaling all the fresh outdoorsy, makes you good to be alive, dance and sing , do a jig and ….breathe out type of thing. 😉
    I watch nature programmes where they capture and ring birds for just this purpose, and I’m ashamed to say I grimace and think, what a terrible experience it must be for the little ones concerned, how on earth can they comprehend what’s happening. BUT then the bigger picture emerges and it’s enabling scientists, biologists etc.. to understand how, where and when these birds migrate and live their lives. Understanding is the key methinks, to all life on this planet.
    Robins have visited my bird table the last few weeks, but there’s a resident Blackbird who has prior claim (In his mind), and tries to chase off any competition to his food,.. (Named of course Bully Black by myself).. We have a visiting squirrel (Cyril) who sits and now and again takes it into his mind to bury one or two peanuts… It’s a jungle out there, and this is suburbia… but still a jungle for the wildlife…So I do my thing and put out a host of goodies to help them through this harsh Winter. Stretch, sigh and say goodbye for now…. take care and have a good week-end my friend… It’s been lovely to visit a while again… xPenx.

    • Robin says:

      Hi Lady P! It’s so wonderful to have you rambling here again. I’ve missed you.
      I grimaced when I saw the band around the goose’s neck, wondering how she could be comfortable with it. It looks almost as though it could choke her. I would think the scientists know what they’re doing in terms of sizing the bands (at least I hope so!!).
      I love that you name your wildlife. 🙂

  7. […] The banded goose and other tales ( […]

  8. That IS cool, all that info on ‘your’ goose!
    It hasn’t felt very spring-like here this week, but the birds are ramping-up their songs, and the squirrels are chasing one another around the tree trunks in search of Squirrely-love…
    I saw a redwing on the feeder Thursday – it’s on the way, even if we humans can’t feel it yet!

  9. Jo Ann says:

    Fascinating story about the banded goose! Sounds like we’re sharing the same weather pattern. No redwings yet, but I expect them anytime – by “them” I mean the pair that nested in our marsh last year. I love their call – sounds like an insect!

    • Robin says:

      I’ll be glad when this weather pattern is disrupted, Jo Ann. I’m a little tired of the clouds. It will be good to spend time in the sun again. 🙂

  10. Karma says:

    That’s really cool about the goose. What great travellers birds are, aren’t they? I am amazed at the ability of tiny hummingbirds to fly across the gulf of Mexico on the way to their winter retreat.

  11. I love the jewels in the grass!!

  12. bearyweather says:

    The tale of the banded goose is very interesting … there are hundreds/thousands of geese in my area (sometimes that many just on my lake) and I have never seen a banded one. If I ever see one, I will report it, too. How did you get the number on the tag?

    • Robin says:

      We have thousands of them here too, Bearyweather, although M and I do try to keep them away from the pond. Getting the tag number was easy. The goose had a large orange band around her neck. All I had to do was zoom in with the camera, and have a good look on the computer monitor. 🙂

  13. Kathy says:

    Hello, Robin. How fascinating to read about the banded goose. (I almost recall reading about this before…) Trying to imagine how long it will be before we even hear a robin. Sigh. Many weeks, I suspect. We usually see our first one the end of March, around my friend Lyn’s birthday.

  14. Very cool! (Always an adventure on the horizon). How nice the goose is letting you travel along.

  15. Sallyann says:

    Wonderful icicles. 🙂
    The mornings are getting lighter here on my walk home from work, and the birds have started to sing me on my way too. 🙂
    It seems almost everyone is holding out for spring this year, but its a long time coming. 🙂

  16. […] The banded goose returned to the pond today.  Now that I know who she is, I wouldn’t mind in the least if she hung around for a while.  Unfortunately, M and I have trained the geese not to stay, and they usually fly off within a few minutes of seeing one of us near the pond. […]

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