The “dinosaurs” have invaded the goose pen.

These wild turkeys help themselves to the cracked corn, bread crumbs and anything else I provide to my increasingly amorous flock.

The turkeys — which I really like because they are just so different from any other bird, wild or domestic — seem to have found a home in my backyard and in the goose pen.

One morning, I looked out the back hall window over the snow atop my Pekin ducks’ home and saw just a bit of brown. My first thought was that a nasty raccoon had returned. But no — it was a female turkey having her morning breakfast.

Geese are incredibly generous. They don’t seem mind the presence of the turkeys — or the cardinals, chickadees, blue jays or crows in their pen. They know I will keep them well fed.

And being well fed is a necessity, especially right now.

Finny is asking Dufey, Sammie and any other nearby female goose, “Hey, baby, what’s your sign? Want to get together? Your place or mine?”

The mating has begun, so it won’t be long before the girls will build their hay and breast-feather nests and begin to lay their three-egg-omelet-size, bright white eggs.

I sure hope we have some goslings who survive this year. Last year was a record for babies, but every last one of them disappeared, so I had no little ones to watch grow into full-fledged ganders or geese.

Finny has been paying special attention to me lately. He and I have rather in-depth conversations, and when I enter the pen, he comes right up to me and lets me pat or hug him. I think he’s still a bit confused about who might be the proper mate.

And he grows more beautiful, the older he gets. His long, lovely Sebastopol gray-and-white feathers seem to float on air. His face is framed in white, while his neck is turning a slightly darker gray. At three years old, he is certainly the beauty of the flock.

Meanwhile, the small, brown Khaki Campbell ducks living next door to the goose pen are already trying to make ducklings. Billie has his choice of Millie or Tillie almost every day. But so far, no eggs.

I am looking forward to the first ones. Duck eggs are wonderfully delicious — and of course, they are so very fresh.

A little later, I’ll let one of the girls sit on her eggs, and perhaps she’ll hatch out a few.

Hopefully, the turkeys who now roost in very tall trees near the goose pen will soon decide it’s time to build their own nests and start working on their families.

I’d like to see 50 pounds of cracked corn last more than a couple of weeks.

Spring is certainly in the air, and on the ground, despite the several feet of snow lying around everywhere. The crocuses and tulips are undoubtedly struggling to reach through the snow, but they can’t get very far right now.

But for the geese and ducks — yes, spring is definitely here.

I may be reached at [email protected]


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