As regular CFZ-watchers will know, for some time Corinna has been doing a column for Animals & Men and a regular segment on On The Track... particularly about out-of-place birds and rare vagrants. There seem to be more and more bird stories from all over the world hitting the news these days so, to make room for them all - and to give them all equal and worthy coverage - she has set up this new blog to cover all things feathery and Fortean.

Friday, 30 August 2019

Solo goose calls Sault home

Somebody hand this bird a map and ask him, or her, their plans for the fall.

A greater white-fronted goose has set up home in Sault Ste. Marie for at least three weeks.

The goose is east of its usual haunts which can range from Manitoba, Saskatchewan, the Northwest Territories and even above the Arctic Circle, said Sault Naturalists president Dave Euler.

“I don’t know” what the greater white-fronted goose is doing in the Sault, Euler told The Sault Star on Tuesday. “It’s out of range.”

This bird also doesn’t have a cuckoo clock handy or a wide social network. It’s not unusual for this bird species to be in the area, but its stay is typically “a day or two and, bang, they’re gone,” said Euler. He is not aware of any other greater white-fronted geese spending time with the bird that’s been spotted at Bellevue Park and John Rhodes Community Centre. That, too, is unusual. Typically several of the geese species are together.

He suggests the lone errant traveller may have been adopted by someone in Algoma District with an affection for waterfowl. Given how long the greater white-fronted goose has stayed in the Sault it’s “probably not totally wild,” said the retired Lakehead University forestry professor.

“(The bird) found himself in love with a human somewhere and for some odd reason has just stayed around,” said Euler. “For whatever reason he left his human companion. (The bird) looks like he’s found his happy place.”

The greater white-fronted goose eats grain or grass – which is what the bird was doing when spotted by The Sault Star at Bellevue Park on Tuesday morning – and gets along with the much more numerous Canada Geese.

“A goose is a goose,” said Euler, describing the visitor to the city as “a happy goose doing its thing.”

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