“G” Goose by Jan Darling

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CURIOUS COLLECTIVES  

G GEESE

A Goose is a Goose is a Goose is a Goose

She’s a sociable gal who’s not on the loose

A gal?  Not a pal? To whom does she pander?

Her boyfriend of course – he’s called a Gander.

 

They’re sociable birds – faithful and kind

Once got together – as family they bind.

Goose lays the eggs and sits on their nest

While Gander the loyal, stands guard east through west.

 

The larger the bird, the longer the wait.

From laying of eggs to arrival of freight;

Depending on kind it’s four to five weeks

‘Tween no-one to feed, then up to nine beaks!

 

At two to three months they take their first flights

And have their first chance to see home from the heights

When the nest’s full, the babies are jostling

While living at home, the young are called Gosling.

 

With family they fly to see some of the world

Through all kinds of skies and clouds that are curled

When they reach the place where each one was hatched

They catch up with their friends and all are despatched.

 

When Goslings join up to fly round the clock

So many together we call them a Flock.

They seek new adventures and these they will find,

With new friendships made leaving no one behind. 

 

When Geese fly so close that they look like a lump

There’s a special name – they’re called a Plump.

A Plump of Geese, many a sister and brother –

How do they not bump into each other?

 

When adult geese fly in great numbers we say

They’re a Skein or a Team and no one will stray;

When they fly in a V-shape, that’s called a Wedge

As neat as can be from edge right to edge.

 

There’s a special technique they use for migration:

They gather their thousands in V formation.

Each bird flies above the bird right in front

Creating a marvellous aerial stunt…

 

This flight reduces resistance to wind

A clever technique with science twinned

To maximise effort and save the birds’ strength

For a successful migration, no matter the length.

 

So far we have Geese in Plump, Flock and Skein

In the Team and the Wedge, not together in vain.

They’re all in the air, but when Geese are grounded

It’s a Gaggle of Geese, ‘cos that’s how they sounded.

 

They’re creatures of habit with hearts that are true

Once they are mated it’s always the two

Each year they return to the nest made together

Regardless of age, regardless of weather.

 

If times are good and food is a-plenty

Your fortunate Goose may live up to twenty.

When one mate dies, the other does mourn

Often living its life alone and forlorn.

 

It’s true that Geese will find comfortable quarter

Their only real need – being close to the water

They eat nuts, grass and berries, mixed with some seeds

It’s much the same for all of the breeds.

 

Notes:

What is a male Goose called?

What is a female Goose called?

What is a young Goose called?

How old is a Gosling when he takes his first flight?

Do Goslings stay with their parents all their lives?

What do you call a group of Goslings?

How many names can you think of for groups of Geese?

What is the special name for a group of Geese on the ground?

What shape do migrating Geese fly in?

Why do Geese fly in a V shape?

How long can a Goose live?

You can listen to the honking sounds made by Geese on YouTube.  Just type in ‘Sounds of…..” and you will be directed to an appropriate website.

 

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