Sunday, February 17, 2008

Yo, goose! This ain't Canada! Move it along.

The East Bay of San Francisco is blessed with some of the mildest weather on the planet. What we call winter much of the rest of the Northern Hemisphere calls spring. Once the winter storms are over, which often happens as it did this year in February, we can get weeks of early spring, like we are getting now. The sun is out, the temperature is in the mid to upper 60's, there is very little breeze. In the next few months, the days will get longer and warmer, there will start being a breeze in the late afternoon.

In other neighborhoods I've lived in, I would call this hummingbird weather, the first time I would see the ruby throats out and about. Near Lake Merritt, the most noticeable difference in the local bird population is the Canada Goose. In any little stretch of open space, besides our local urban scavengers the gulls and pigeons, there are now a few Canada Geese hanging out. If these geese think of humans as hunters, you wouldn't know it from how they act when they are in Oakland. They don't show a lot of fear of humans. In fact, some of them have serious attitudes and noisily make sure their territory isn't being encroached. The thing is, it isn't their territory for long. Brassy honkers who chase folks off the lawn one day are no where to be seen the next, because this is just a stopover on their trip north for spring. They are called Canada Geese for a reason.

Still in all, it's nice to see them. Our local economy needs the tourists.



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4 comments:

FranIAm said...

Tourism by geese. Matty you so funny. I see geese lolz in your future.

Distributorcap said...

those geese are protected here on the east..

and they are also a lot more intelligent than most americans

dguzman said...

All geese tend to have a little bit of (or a lot of) attitude, Matty Boy. I advise people to steer clear of them--they get very upset when they feel encroached upon, and if they start hissing at you, RUN. They can be mean!

SillyGoose said...

Yeah geese are charming in small numbers, but huge infestations can be horrifying. In Chicago it seems like the geese never leave and every year there are SO MANY MORE OF THEM! The amount of poop that they are capable of producing would be impressive if it wasn't all over our shoes...I work at a school that that had to get "Goosebuster" for our athletic fields after leasing dogs to chase them (yes, really) got too expensive. It randomly lets out these recordings of geese making crazy distress calls and the real geese scatter. Remember that name, because let me tell you, from a Chicagoan's experience, such small numbers of geese do not last. As goslings grow up, return to the site to have more babies, your population will expand and your patience will shrink.