Hoots, Howls, and Hollers – April 07, 2020
I get it. We are all stressed out about the current events in our lives…events not of our making…events that depend on our good behavior to get the desired solutions. We would all like to get back to our relatively carefree and productive lives. I get it; I’m pretty sure you get it, but I have my doubts about the lone golfer and his reaction to the father goose. I am thinking the story reveals a bleaker side of things. Please tell me this is an anomaly.
It appears that the lone golfer was having a bad day on the course. At least I hope this is what precipitated his unseemly behavior. It appears that out of nowhere the lone golfer was confronted by a father goose who went into defense mode. You may have seen this behavior.
Charging forth, feathered wings outstretched, beak in motion, the goose held its ground. It had a good reason. Hidden nearby was his mate and her nest. Most animals, geese included, put all of their yearly energy and intention into raising babies and successfully fledging them…that is their job, and they take it seriously…that is how nature works…that is why we have this beautiful world.
Witnesses and rescuers saw it all. They were outraged. The golf club management was outraged. What they all saw was the lone golfer reacting without thinking (I am hoping it wasn’t just meanness.). Here he is charging the protective father goose with his weapon-like golf club in batting not swinging position. Father Goose stood at best on his tippy-toed pes aneriunus (duck foot) almost…almost 4 feet tall with wings outspread. Ok, they can make a fierce noise emitted through that beak, but face it they have no teeth…no teeth…not a lot of harm can be done with no teeth. You might get a scratch or two. You might even bruise if you are the type that bruises easily…but there aren’t any duck teeth like we know teeth…no fangs, no incisors, no molars…no teeth to tear prey with or defend his mate and nest. And, then there are those frightening wings made of the terrifying dreaded f-e-a-t-h-e-r-s! Enough said….
The Good Samaritans that witnessed this ugly display brought the goose in. Our hero vets and medical staff were able to perform their magic and put the wing back together again. Only time will tell if the wing will heal well enough for father goose to be returned to his mate who will welcome him back with open wings. The eggs/nestlings/precious progeny will not do so well. They will likely have to be abandoned if unhatched because theirs is a two family job.
With this event in mind, all I am asking is that even during stressful times, even during bad days on the golf course, even faced with a charging protective father goose that you allow yourself to stop. Allow yourself to think. Allow yourself to be rational. Allow yourself to walk in another’s shoes. Let the goose do his job and take a mulligan for that hole.
During our Covidapacolypse rebuke the zombie in yourself and call out to your higher self. Engage with other’s higher selves and make space for our fellow beings.
When can a father goose get a little help?
This Week @ Liberty – April 07, 2020
I have been extremely busy the past couple of weeks trying to rework (and then re-rework) the schedule for the intake window. Volunteers have been dropping out, then rejoining, then dropping out again, making the schedule a moving target. Hey, it’s all part of the job. We haven’t had many spikes in arrivals that I have noticed until TODAY! We took in 45 on Sunday, and today (Monday), we had admitted 74 animals. I guess people are out walking around, finding little critters on the ground. It’s making other duties (like posting TW@L!) kind of hard to accomplish, so this might be a little scattered, but I’m trying! Tell all your friends, keep us in mind for donations as all of our normal fundraising activities have been either cancelled or postponed.
Let’s see what DID happen…
The injured bald eagle that came in recently improved with treatment for elevated lead levels. He was measured and banded by Tuk Jacobson (AZGFD) at Liberty last week and then transported to the release site. This report is by Tuk:
“Here are some photos taken at the release. There were people monitoring this site almost daily for any signs that there was a complete pair of adults. The female was always around the lake and occasionally there would be 1-2 other adults that passed through. On the day of the release, there was just the female around for the ~1 hour prior to me arriving. Once released, another adult flew in from downstream, perched with the female, and harassed this male. Nothing too aggressive (no obvious contact, or driving it to the ground), but definitely territorial. As of the update about an hour ago, he has moved over to the Watson/Willow lake area.”
Another successful eagle rehab by Liberty Wildlife!
Look for 10 pictures
The array of animals is always astounding, and now we’re getting in ducklings and other water fowl with regularity. We have also taken in several goslings this year, some of which are housed with some of the older ducklings. Space is at a premium and water birds are notorious for destroying their enclosures.
Look for 4 pictures.
On “Vet Night”, every animal is checked for progress. If they’re doing well and are making progress, they might be sent outside into a flight enclosure. If they need more time, their treatment is assessed and they may spend more time in the ICU before movement to the outside.
Look for 5 pictures
Periodically, we received birds that have been trapped out west near Luke AFB. This is done with the aim to mitigate any bird strike hazard that might exist with Luke traffic. The problem is the birds are trapped with a leg snare trap and many of them are either killed outright or are injured severely in the process. The agency that does this brought in a western meadowlark recently with both legs severely injured by this trapping activity. Sadly, the bird did not survive his injuries.
Look for 2 pictures
We usually get in a large number of orphaned great horned owls each spring. This year is no exception. they are coming from all over the state, from as far south as Sierra Vista, from as far west as Havasu City, and as far north as Flagstaff and beyond. the good news is, our collection of foster parent GHOs are standing by, ready to take on the task of raising these little owlets that then become perfect hunters. They are well prepared to take their place as the newest generation of “Tigers of the Sky” in a few months. Rodents, beware!
Look for 2 pictures
Speaking of Owls…
The training for “Garfunkel” keeps progressing.
Garfunkel (Funky) is a ten-month-old Eurasian Eagle Owl acquired by Balinda Strosnider and John Glitsos as an educational ambassador.
As part of his enrichment plan, he plays “catch” with low-impact baseballs in this video. This is just one enrichment behavior for Funky. He also has a miniature cloth Frisbee, a cotton rope, paper towel tubes, a radio-controlled rat, and numerous other enrichment items. These are rotated daily using a “behavior-based enrichment protocol” developed by the San Diego Wild Animal Park. Funky plays baseball until John and Balinda get too tired to play any longer! The other night he played for over 2 hours! Contrary to popular belief, raptors play all the time. They use their abilities to solve problems, overcome obstacles, and enhance their skills – such as foraging, capturing, and flying in novel ways. There is even a Facebook page called Bird of Prey Enrichment with over 5,000 members.
Here’s a video of Funky “Shagging Fungoes” in the training enclosure.
Posted by Terry Stevens