Photo journal: Persuading goslings onto water
This photo journal features five little goslings on the day they took their first swim in Bingley canal. These five goslings hatched on the 23rd April 2011. Their mother kept their nest well hidden under a shady tree and high on a banking. The first indication that the chicks had hatched was seeing her 'brooding' - her feathers plumped out to cover all her babies. In addition, the father turned up to stand guard, after a total absence all the time she was sitting on the nest, a behaviour observed in another photo journal.
As per usual, the goslings spent the first 24 hours in the nest. However, they need to get to water quickly both to drink and to feed so the parents persuade them out onto water as early as possible.
In this instance they had two attempts: the first early in the morning but there were a lot of other geese around and the mother took the goslings back to the nest. Finally, in the early afternoon both parents took the goslings back down the steep banking and introduced them to the canal.
This is a little picture diary of their first encounter with water. For best viewing of the gosling pictures, scroll down.
Goslings take the plunge
Geese may be born with the ability to swim, but sometimes it takes a bit of persuasion to get them to take the leap into water for the first time.
In this case it was a steep bank that seemed to hold the goslings back most. It was interesting to see this bird behaviour and to note how the adult geese led by example. First the male went into the water with a big splash, closely followed by the female. For them it was easy, after all it was a well trodden path for them with their big feet.
For the little ones left on the banking, it was more of a challenge. One by one they tumbled rather than jumped and eventually they all made it into the water.
Geese don't normally use the same nest for night-time roosting after the eggs hatch, unless there are still eggs being incubated. In this case that is just as well since it is hard to see how they would ever make it back up that incline.
Original Gosling Pictures
A word about the photographs
All the images used here are copyright to the photojournalist, AnnMackieMiller. They are deliberately uploaded here as low resolution copies, so they cannot be enlarged without losing pixelisation. This is to discourage theft.
Electronic, high resolutions copies are available for a small fee for use on blogs and websites but NOT for reproduction on cards or photo gifts - the right for this is reserved for the photographer. Please contact the photographer for details.
Where to find more work by AnnMackieMiller online
- BIRDWATCHING UK | All About Birds: Pictures of Birds: Bird Behaviour
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- Photography by AnnMackieMiller: Home: Zazzle.com Store or zazzle.co.uk/just_cards*
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- The Gosling Who Lives Under the Hawthorn Tree
Hello, my name is Thorn and I live under a hawthorn tree.