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  • Writer's pictureTina

The Original Gangster

Gustav is the grey goose on the right

There is a turf war going on here at the farm. Have hooligans invaded us? Only if you consider geese warring hooligans. If you remember, last year was the first year in almost thirty years that our gaggle of geese has successfully hatched goslings. The six OG’s, as we are calling them, hatched seven goslings. One little gosling passed away; now we have six OG’s (Original Gangsters or Old Geese, either applies) and six young bloods. Until recently, the old heads and the young bloods have lived happily as one large family.

However, that has changed, and now they have broken ranks and are at war with each other. We have a lot of time on our hands, and we have a lot of imagination. We have cast Gustav the Gimpy Goose in the role of the God Father. We think Gustav is an old gander, and he has an ancient injury that left him with a limp. He is the first to eat, and once he has finished, he limps about protecting the other geese while they eat, and he is the sassiest. We have decided the young bloods committed some insulting crime against Gustav and the rest of the family. Now, they are not only outcasts; they need to watch their back and sleep with one eye open, or they will find a half-eaten egg in their bed…err, nest. It’s all very dramatic.

In reality, there is probably a young gander who has claimed the young geese as his own. Now, the ganders are fighting over dominance. Really, humans are not that different from animals. Like animals, humans go to war over territory, power, and sex. In this little war, I believe the geese will remain divided until the eggs hatch. We, more accurately, I am hoping eggs hatch. However, it will be a waiting game.

The OG’s have maintained dominance over the large pond that is easily seen coming in the lane. The young bloods have moved to the small pond that sits off to the right once you round the bend in the lane. I’m not confident the young geese can successfully hatch eggs in that pasture with Eric’s nosey pasture pigs running about. I am hoping the OG’s hatch eggs again. Also, the Canadian geese come here to nest, but they remain neutral in the turf wars, which is not surprising. We now have three generations of Canadian geese who return here each year to nest. Nature is amazing.

Until they hatch, I am sure the squawking, honking, wing flapping, and squabbling will continue. Gustav is getting up there in years; he can’t maintain his rule forever. I am rooting for Gustav; he’s a pretty cool goose. The young bloods are more or less wild. They come to the barn to eat, but they don’t react when I call them or get within six feet of us. The OG’s were hand raised and continue to come in when I call them. I’m happy our goose population is increasing, but I will be sad when my OG’s disappear.

On this gloomy Friday, stay safe, be smart, respect the OG, and keep washing your hands.

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