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Issue 31: July 2007

In This Issue:

  Breaking Ground on Louisville
  The Refilling of Pekin Pond
  Special Thanks
  Special Thanks II
  Majestic Geese Need Homes
  Geese and Home Security
  Get to Know Your Predators:
Raccoon
  Recommended Reading:
Earthquack!
  Reader Poll #31
  Results of Reader Poll #30
 

Geese and Home Security

Guard geese are snapping at the heels of would-be burglars across back yards as home owners embrace them as family pets. Famous for saving the Roman Empire from a surprise attack by the Gauls in 365 BC, geese are still helping to patrol properties today.

Some sources say that if you have a goose in your yard rather than a dog a robbery is less likely to occur in your home. Why? Potential invaders know that geese are likely to sound the alarm and because they are notoriously known to attack trespassers. Deafening shrills and the threat of attack by territorial geese that can weigh up to 26 lbs. and have bills like serrated-edged knives is threat enough to keep some trouble at bay.

The alarm a goose sounds is very different from its other calls. It is loud and piercing. While neighbors may ignore a barking dog, they are likely to look out the window when they hear this distinctive alarm.

Get to Know Your Predators: Raccoon

Raccoons weigh around thirty pounds. They prefer to do most of their dirty work in darkness; however, they can sometimes be seen during the day. 

The number one thing that raccoons do is look for food, so do not underestimate the determination of this crafty predator. They are lured in by duck food and the ducks themselves. They are very good problem solvers and excellent lock picks. I can remember a few occasions as a youngster when a raccoon let our chickens out while getting at the grain. Padlocks, thankfully, are beyond their capabilities.

Raccoons are capable of tearing and biting through aviary netting and poultry fencing to get at your ducks. A raccoon will employ every tactic at its disposal to get at your flock. Worst of all, raccoons have been known to eat a duck right through the fencing if they can get their paws on any part of the sleeping bird.

Recommended Reading*


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Earthquack!
By Margie Palatini

Henny Penny's sky-is-falling tale has been retold often enough that few probably even remember its source material--but that doesn't stop another retread, this one surprisingly conservative in its story-telling liberties, by Margie Palatini (The Web Files) and dignified illustrator Barry Moser.

Earthshaking rumblings make for a skittish duckling (and other nervous farm animals) in this somewhat long-winded variation on the Henny Penny theme. After completing his morning laps, a jittery Chucky Ducky fervently attempts to warn the other skeptical and pun-fully named animals (e.g., Lucy Goosey, Sue Ewe, Billy the kid) of what he's sure is an earthquake (He heard the ground grumble. He felt the ground rumble). Oh, it can't be that baa-ad, retort the lambs while the pig grunts, Hogwash! Several lengthy episodes of earth crumbling and animal tumbling pass before a hungry weasel (sporting a white coat and masquerading as Herman Ermine) provides a refreshing detour and real tension to the story.

* For our full recommended reading list, click here. If you order from Amazon by way of our website, Majestic receives a portion of the proceeds!
 

Reader Poll #31

Question: Which part of the Majestic Monthly do you most often read first?

Feature Article
Health Article
Breed Article
Get to Know Your Predator
Waterfowl Art Project
Recommended Reading

Results of Reader Poll #30

Question: Which are funnier to watch, ducks or geese?

Ducks! 91%
Geese! 9%

Contact Us

Majestic Waterfowl Sanctuary
17 Barker Road
Lebanon, CT 06249
director@majesticwaterfowl.org

Our Newsletter

The Majestic Monthly is published 12 times per year. Previous issues are available in our Archives.

Breaking Ground on Louisville

Thanks to your generous donations, we have broken ground on Louisville! The underground fencing for this pen has been placed 4 feet down into the ground. Construction on the structure itself will take place in July, and we hope to have it complete and useable by early August.

More funds are needed to complete this project, so if you have not donated, please consider doing so—we really need your help! If we have helped you with your flock, consider returning the favor by helping the ducks and geese here as well as those waiting for enough space to come into our sanctuary. We are a do-it-yourself team here at Majestic, which means even the smallest donation goes a long way.


The Refilling of Pekin Pond

Neighboring Louisville is Pekin Pond, and we are happy to announce it is a pond once again! The pond bed has been empty for years. The stream that once fed and filled this basin had slowly carved out a more direct path down the property that left the pond to dry up and become overgrown with brush and trees. We have worked on clearing the pond bed for nearly a year in order to bring it back to life. While we had the excavator on hand for Louisville, we used it to set the stream back to its original bed again. Pekin Pond is now full and beautiful once more!

If you would like to help breathe life back into Pekin Pond, consider making a plant donation. We can really use some plants to naturalize the waterscape: hardy water lilies, hardy lotus, pampas grass, bamboo, rice and cattails are some great ideas. If you live locally and can bring any of these items by, just send us an email and let us know when you would like to stop in for a visit. If you don’t live locally and would like to donate pond plants, you can order plants from William Tricker Inc: www.tricker.com. All plants donated must be non-toxic, perennial and must be hardy enough to survive our Zone 6 winters. Thank you!


Special Thanks

We would like to extend a special thank you to Sean and Jeff for coming out again to volunteer. With their help we were able to complete the installation of our patio misting system, which cools the waterfowl in The Courtyard. Next time we promise not to step on your fingers while you hold the ladder—sorry! Thank you for your continued generosity and support and for taking us out to dinner. You are too kind for words.

Happy Birthday, Jeff!


Special Thanks II

We would also like to extend an extra special thank you to Richard. Richard just celebrated a birthday as well, and in lieu of accepting gifts from his family and friends, he asked that donations be made towards our sanctuary. Richard came to the sanctuary with his family to personally present us with a check for $200!

Richard, it is a very rare person who gives so selflessly, especially at your age. We are astounded by your generosity and thoughtfulness. It was such a pleasure meeting you and your family. We hope you enjoyed the tour of our sanctuary. Thank you most sincerely, and do come again.


Majestic Geese Need Homes

We need wonderful homes for our rescued geese! We have six at Majestic and two more waiting for enough room at our sanctuary to come in. All of them need homes with swimming accommodations, fenced in yards and a nighttime lock up for safe sleeping.

If you are interested in adopting a pair of geese from us, it is important to understand that when you arrive at the sanctuary they will sound the alarm at you! You will not be able to witness the level of interaction we experience with them because you are unknown to them. Geese are not very trusting of strangers, but don’t worry; you will soon establish a similar relationship with them once they are in their new home with you. Changes in their demeanor are evident within the first couple weeks of ownership. As with many animals, this relationship continually improves with time, routine and commitment to their care.

Tutter and Angelo: Toulouse Ganders

These two boys are very interactive and extend a loud greeting when they see humans approaching! Tutter runs up to greet us with Angelo right behind him. When we move around the outside of their pen, both boys follow us along the fence line. Tutter allows some petting once you earn his trust, while Angelo stands back a foot or two and observes. Both boys love interactive play. One of their favorite pastimes is snorkeling in colored cups of water. These are high energy geese who would do better in a home without small children. Tutter & Angelo are happy to swim in a kiddie pool or two.

Ali and Chan: Pilgrim Gander and White China Gander

These two boys are a bit naughty—but so completely wonderful! They are very smart and learn a new routine within a day or two. They will go wherever you guide them. If we have lettuce treats Chan will come very close, but has not quite succumbed to eating out of our hands yet. Ali is a jealous protector of his best pal Chan, and watches humans very closely to be sure his friend is safe. These big, beautiful boys both prefer to move away from humans when approached rather than attack, but if cornered, both will hiss and Ali may charge. If we call Ali’s bluff, and react by charging at him, he will quickly back down and move away.

Ali & Chan need a home with a family who are not-so-interested in close interaction with them as they are in granting a few abandoned animals a life-long place to stay. A true animal-lover would enjoy the sight and sound of these gorgeous ganders. These geese tend to only make noise when humans approach. They would do better in a home without small children. They are low maintenance geese, requesting very little of your attention outside of providing them with their basic necessities. Ali & Chan require a minimum of a small pond for swimming.

Bowie and China Girl: Toulouse Gander and White China Goose

Bowie and China girl are very sweet and soft spoken. They do make some noise when humans approach, but not as much as the others. They are pleasant geese who are a bit shy, but will slowly come around to your attention. Both are easy to herd and are quick learners.

Bowie will fluff his feathers in display when he first meets you, but his threats stop here. Once he gets to know you, he no longer does this. China is just beginning to walk up and investigate us. China is also an egg-layer. Both have shown the beginning of interest in play activities and enjoy examining new and colorful objects shown to them. These geese would work out well with a family with small children. This pair is content to swim in a kiddie pool or two.

If you are interest in adopting any of these pairs of geese, please fill out our online adoption application and email us digital photos of your goose pen.

       Majestic Waterfowl Sanctuary makes no representation, warranty, or guarantee in connection with any guidance provided on this website. Majestic Waterfowl Sanctuary expressly disclaims any liability or responsibility for loss or damage resulting from its use or for the violation of any federal, state or municipal law or regulation with which such guidance may conflict. Any guidance is general in nature. In addition, the assistance of a qualified professional should be enlisted to address any specific circumstances.
 

© Majestic Waterfowl Sanctuary 2007