Archive for May, 2011

Canada goose draws crowd in Guelph plaza

Friday, May 27th, 2011

Because of its rarity, the Canada goose nesting in the parking lot at the Hartsland Plaza at Edinburgh and Kortright roads is drawing a lot of attention.

Nestled beside a lamppost on an island of grass and cement, the goose has been the cause of a number of cars to slow down. Signs have been erected to block off the parking spots directly beside the nesting animal, attempting to give it a little more space.

The sight of a goose nesting in an unusual place wasn new for Bonnie Bentresca, who was shopping Wednesday morning at the Zehrs grocery store in the plaza. canada goose jacket At Homewood Health Centre, where she works, she said Canada geese have nested on the roof of the building for the past three years. She calls them Bonnie and Clyde.

strange that they nest where they do, she said.

Bentresca said she fears for the goslings when they hatch at Hartsland Plaza because they will have to cross a busy section of Edinburgh Road in order to make their way to water. But, she said, when the young geese do line up and parade across the road, forcing cars to come to a halt, God way of making us slow down.

Pieces of bread are strewn about the ground at the breast of the nesting mum, and cups of water have been placed at her side. Bird seed and apple cores have also made their way onto the cement island in the parking lot, attracting seagulls to mooch off the scattered gifts.

Rob Orobono, a resident of the city south end, said while people may have good intentions in placing human food around the bird, they are actually causing it harm.

geese are not supposed to eat bread. It the worst thing you can give a goose or a duck, he said. just drives me nuts.

a wild animal, it knows how to get food and water, he added.

The Canadian Wildlife Federation fact sheet on the Canada goose explains these birds feed on a variety of leaves, flowers, stems, roots, seeds and berries. Breeding is timed so the eggs will hatch when the plants that the goslings feed on have their highest nutritional value.

Orobono said with people constantly placing bits of bread or muffins around the nesting animal, the goslings will end up feasting on the wrong things.

The incubation period lasts for 25 to 28 days, during which the female leaves the nest briefly each day to feed, drink and bathe. When the young geese grow up, the females will likely return to nest in the same area where their parents nested, often using the same nest site.