Funny how many baby creatures tend to have feet far too big for their bodies.
Such is the way with my five not-so-little goslings.

They are now just over a month old — no longer tiny fluff balls — and their legs and feet look like they belong to year-old geese.

The parents have virtually given up trying to keep them together. Mothers Susie-Q and Sammie take turns leading or following one or more of the babes.
Fathers Finny and Shamus are always nearby, and if any of the rest of the flock (now called Flock 2) get anywhere near the little ones, loud squawks begin, wings unfurl and either or both brothers make a threatening beeline toward the interlopers.

Even though I am well known by all the adult geese, particularly Finny, I’ll still get a squawk if I venture too close — although recently, the little ones are getting more accustomed to me. I have been able to feed a couple of them from my hand, under Finny’s watchful eye.

All five are now named. The first, Suesun, is the babe of Susie-Q. She is still the yellowest of them all. Then there’s Buttercup and Daisy, who are the next two yellowest.

I am particularly fond of the two grayish ones. I don’t remember seeing goslings stay that gray for so long. Maybe they will more closely resemble my lovely dark gray-and-white Susie-Q. So they have received names befitting their color — the grayest is Gracie and the next grayest is Sylvie.

I hope they all are girls, but I won’t know that for a few months.

The quintuplets have received lots of visitors lately, and much to my surprise, the parents haven’t gone bonkers.

In the past, my flock wouldn’t allow anyone but me into the pen. But now, they seem to understand that most any friend of mine may be OK.

Or, it could be that the gentle demeanor of my friends suit them perfectly.

Both women, on two separate occasions, slowly entered the pen and gently scooched or bent down, speaking quietly to the flock. Everyone seemed OK with this and continued doing whatever it was they had been doing before my friends entered the pen.

Finny, of course, continues to show that I raised him and is much more willing to approach one of my friends.

The first thing he does, as he does with me every time I enter the pen, is start looking for my hair. Then he starts playing with it.

As the summer wears on, not only are we humans benefiting from the fresh greens and vegetables, but so, too, is my flock. Although grass is OK, clover and dandelion greens are better. But the best is my specialty lettuce.

The little ones seemed to have come with a natural compass that immediately directed them to my special salanova lettuce patch when I let the flock out to graze.

I hadn’t turned my back longer than five minutes before every red and green head was totally devoured.

Ah, well — that’s one of the few less-than-positive aspects of having a flock of both big and little geese.

Within the next couple of weeks, I’m sure the five babes will again double in size.
They and their parents are such a joy to watch.

I may be reached at [email protected]


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