Tag Archives: Egyptian Geese

A Winter’s Tale

Egyptian Geese on Rooftop

Haiku 216

Winter’s not quite done

Freezing rains and gale force winds

A sting in the tail!

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What are you two Egyptian Geese gossiping about? The cold snap? Yes, it hit out of the blue and the temperatures plummeted. But you’re alright. Feathers are incredibly warm!

There’s been snow on Table Mountain and temperatures of 2 degrees Centigrade recorded. Brrr Even the local resident Dassies on the mountain were rather confused by it all. – See here in a Local news clip.

Our coldest and wettest winter month here in Cape Town used to be July. Now it seems to be August. Still, at least it means that all the cold rain is filling up my swimming pool – and the dams, which now stand at 88.7%.

This is enough to last us through all those dry summer months to come.

I don’t mind the cold and the rain; it won’t last. Already the sun is hot when I go outside, even though the air is freezing! Such a conundrum here in South Africa. A cold country with a hot sun!

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post script: For those of you who are interested, the variegated plant with purple flowers that I posted on Friday is actually a Periwinkle, Vinca major ‘Variegata’. Scooj got it and many others had good guesses.

 

Seen Out and About

Egyptian Geese 1

Haiku 167

Seen out and about

Showing off their family

The new residents

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Egyptian Geese 2

I was driving back home one day and came across this little family of Egyptian Geese on my street.

This is the house where the funny-looking Dikkops live; I only hope they have not been displaced!

I stopped my car and got out to take a few photos. As I did so, the parents became more watchful, protecting their clutch from me; they are very good parents.

Egyptian Geese 3

One little chap had no such reservations and came towards me to see who I was! The parents looked nonplussed, but stayed with the main group of goslings.

The bold youngster waddled closer, had a good look and then returned to his family. I think he will go far and become a Leader among Geese.

In the meantime he is a headache for his parents!

 

You’ll Never Eat Alone

Seagull 1

Sit down on a bench with a sandwich in Princes Street Gardens, Edinburgh, and you will soon attract some company.

Seagull 2

This handsome chap came over to share my sandwich. (Yes, of course I gave him some.) I think he is a lesser black-backed gull.

Seagull 3

I found it interesting that seagulls were so prominent all over Edinburgh; more so than when I was actually at the seaside in Suffolk.

I would wake to their loud calls early in the morning.

But I did not mind one bit. Their plaintive cries were music to my ears after the cacophony of screeching Egyptian Geese and Hadedas that I am used to here in Cape Town!

 

photos taken with my Galaxy phone.

 

Sunset Fly-by

Sunset Geese

Sunset Geese

Wedgie!

Egyptian Geese fly by in a wedge formation, heading into the setting sun.

I know the photo is a little blurred, but the light was rapidly fading and my trusty point and click Canon did its best, at least capturing the spirit of the evening flight.

 

post script: You can read here about Why geese fly in a V shape. And Dawn Patrol to see my skein of flying geese.

 

Sunday Promenade

Geese 1

Geese 1

It is important for every family to get enough exercise.

Geese 2

Geese 2

These Egyptian Geese are no exception and put their best foot forward.

Geese 3

Geese 3

Led by Mum (or Dad!) the kids waddle along in single file.

Geese 4

Geese 4

They make quite a spectacle, as they head for their preferred place of residence for the night.

Geese 5

Geese 5

And as they entered the old age home, the guard at the gate held the security boom high for them.

Actually, he had opened the gate for a car to come out, but it was taking its time, so the geese made the most of the opportunity!

 

Pit Pat Paddle Pat

Baby Geese

Baby Geese

Baby Geese paddling in a puddle, in the Gardens, Cape Town.

Mum and Dad on Guard

Mum and Dad on Guard

Mum and Dad guard their chicks from annoying humans, who selfishly wanted to walk on this main pathway!

Behind the Egyptian Geese is a large ornamental pond where they had all been swimming. For some reason they got out and stood by this tiny rivulet and the babies immediately started splashing around in the puddle. All except one forlorn baby who seemed unable to climb out of the steep-sided pond and squeaked loudly and continually while his siblings played.

When we came back later, the whole family was once more reunited in the pond. Phew!

 

Watch the Birdie!

I just took the opportunity to walk Mr Spaghetti Legs and Little Monkey, in glorious winter sunshine, during a break in the storm clouds.

In a small area of open grass by a busy road I saw:

3 Guinea Fowl, 2 Egyptian Geese and 2 Spotted Dikkop

I was particularly happy to see the Dikkop, as I haven’t seen them around for a while. They have very long legs for their body size so look quite comical.

A little farther along, on the soccer field, there were:

20 Guinea Fowl, 2 Egyptian Geese and 2 Hadeda Ibis

None of these birds were very common in this area twenty years ago, but they obviously find it to their liking, as they thrive here. What pleasure they add to a simple dog walk. 🙂

The highlight for me, however, was the Black Headed Heron that I saw again last week, for the first time in many years. It is about a metre tall, blue-grey, with a long neck and beak. Its defence seems to be to stand perfectly still with its beak held vertically in line with its neck. This worked so well with my old dogs, that we could pass by within a metre of it, and my dogs never noticed it.

This didn’t work with Little Monkey, as she had already spotted it moving behind the trees. While she does not chase birds on the field, I don’t know what she would have done with this very large bird. Luckily, she was back on the lead, and by the time we approached the heron, it had adopted its completely motionless stance, and would be undetectable to most dogs. Certainly, Mr Spaghetti Legs never knew it was there.