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Two Sets of Egyptian Geese Chicks


On Sunday morning, before 8am, Zoe and I wrapped up well and went up to the University lakes armed with several slices of bread.  The Sun was shining but there was ice on puddles and a cold north-easterly wind was blowing.  As soon as we got to the large lake we saw the older pair of Egyptian geese (the rufous phase male with its lame grey phase female) with 5 chicks on the water.  Zoe threw bread to them but the mother led her chicks away from us towards the wooded island.  Maybe they had recently been fed by some one else?  The female looked a lot thinner than when we had last seen her and we were disappointed that we were not able to feed her.   We last saw her and her chicks clambering up the bank onto the island.  Then the male went off to chase some mallards and Canada geese, even though these were nowhere near the island.  The males Egyptian geese seem to have been particularly belligerent for the past month or two.

Zoe and I then moved off to the other end of the lake.  There we saw the other younger pair of Egyptian geese (both rufous phase) with only 4 chicks.  I took the above picture of the chicks with the female.  The male was sat on the path and had an injured leg.  Because of this he seemed to find it easier to fly than to walk.  Zoe offered them bread and both the male and the female took it, and even the chicks pecked at some of the smaller pieces.  Unfortunately the weather  forecast is for the rest of this week to remain cold, so the chances of these chicks surviving is fairly small.

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