One morning, around the middle of April, I noticed a fourth Canada Goose in the shadows cast by the massive Oaks at the pond. I wasn’t quite sure until I checked with my binoculars. Norton had a friend. A few days later, I saw her again, always hiding in the shadows of the trees near the pond’s edge. Finally, after over a week of glimpses, I got a shot of her. I came to think of her as Trixie – what else could her name be.
“Norton has a friend,” I called to my sweetheart.
“Really?” he exclaimed. “Where?” he asked as he joined me at the window. She’d already disappeared down the little rise to the pond.
Every time Ralph saw the Trixie and/or Norton, he would go off at Alice, who would try to walk away, ignore him, keep eating. Ralph would cut her off, redirect her walking toward where he wanted her to be, the whole time squawking and shrieking at her. She would just keep moving. He would go at her until she finally went where he wanted. I felt she should have laid her eggs by now and be sitting on them. The mother doesn’t generally leave the eggs once they are laid and if she does, it’s not for long. I actually started to think that Ralph had stressed her to the point that she couldn’t lay!
Norton would stand by the trees, watching from a distance; Trixie would either be absent or hovering by the trees, never going much further than the shore. One day, Alice was watching Trixie and Norton when, as usual, Ralph began squawking at her. She had had enough, I think, and sat down by the pond, facing Trixie and Norton. Ralph, in a huff, plopped down a few feet away, facing the opposite direction.
And so, the month of April went. I still didn’t know if any eggs had been laid; although, there were times earlier in the month when Alice looked so heavy with them as she waddled away from Ralph’s tirades, I was astounded she could walk. Norton kept his distance, but was ever-present and slowly, Trixie became more visible.
Eventually, the mystery of the tirades would be solved, but there were other adventures to be had before then.