So, after being told that I “have to blog about, Charles”, I guess that I better blog about, Charles, lest I get fired. We spent the morning butchering nearly a dozen plus chickens. This is a job that I will never tell anyone that “it’s easy”. Perhaps it is for some people, but for me, I never find the taking of one life for sustaining my own, easy. I’m happy that I know that my chicken’s lives are happy. They are well-fed and watered, are free-range
and when the end comes, we make it as fast as possible.
And so, after butchering chickens this morning, we ate some lunch and then headed out to the corral to pull down some fencing so it would be out of the way of felling a large, dead tree the morning of 2011 Fall Fry Fest. We got outside, armed with fencing tool and hammer and Shiloh-the-dog was running around inspecting the charred logs down in “The Pit”, when DH and I heard a strange sound. “Is that a snake?!” was uttered from DH, and
I responded with “… It’s a GOOSE?!”
Said goose, a gander really, was sitting down at the bottom of the compost/manure pile and had been startled by Shiloh. The dog left the goose alone for a bit as I pulled insulators off of the T-posts, until a little later when she decided that she was going to try to check the goose out again. Mr. Goose decided that he was not going to stick around for the dog, and I saw the recognition of “Hey… those are people up there” in his eyes. So, he walked himself around the fence and up into the corral, to the relative “safety” of
being around we humans.
DH uttered, “I’m not feeding it. I’m not watering it. It’s NOT staying!” No, there were no plans for the goose to stay, but having grown up with geese, albeit briefly, I knew that geese don’t wander from home, unless they don’t “know” where home is. This told me that our visitor was new to the neighborhood, and that he knew that “people were safe”. When Shiloh came up into the corral, he flew towards me, and attempted to hide behind me, out of sight of the dog. Once he spotted the chickens, which he was apparently very comfortable around, he attempted to blend in with the flock. The chickens of course, didn’t QUITE know what to make of him.
Being the, “do unto others as you would have them do unto you”, I put out water for the big guy, and took some photos, figuring that I’d post a craigslist ad about a lost goose. I had also stopped over at the neighbor’s house, as I knew they had ducks and chickens, but perhaps they’d lost a goose? No such luck. So, Mr. Goose spent the afternoon with our chicken flock. We went about our business sealing chickens with our Food Saver, when we heard a knock on the door. It was another neighbor, Jen, and her daughters, saying that they heard we “found Charles”.
Apparently one of Jen’s teenage daughters rescued Charles (and Embden Goose) from being a Christmas Goose, as he was a high school farm project. She couldn’t bear to see him be dinner. So, she showed up at home with him yesterday. Jen and her husband have a large spring-fed pond on their property, and Jen explained that while they were getting Charles’ “house” set-up, they let him enjoy the pond. When they turned around, he was gone. Jen’s daughter was very upset with her for losing Charles!
Jen retrieved Charles’ crate and we put it by the access door to the barn and herded him towards the crate. Thankfully, Charles appears to be a fairly tame goose, and he made his way towards the door (Jen had already explained that she was afraid of him), and at the last second, made a sideways move to avoid the crate. I quickly grabbed my right hand loosely around his neck and my left around his chest, and with one “honk!” from Charles, had him in the crate. Jen and I hauled him back to her SUV and into the back.
Welcome to the neighborhood, Charles. If you show up in the yard again – at least
we know where you belong.