Sometimes when conducting fieldwork a lot can happen in a short space of time. Yesterday, myself, Chantelle and Freydis went in a trek across the peninsula to an inlet we thought looked interesting on the map. After a long walk on which we saw nothing of note except musk ox and grey plover we reached the inlet and we're ready to turn back disappointed. But then across the inlet we saw a pair with 3 goslings. Upon seeing us the adults began honking and led to the chicks into the water and then onto the sea ice. The goslings are small, grey and cute and we roughly estimate they are 3-5 days old.
Today , we attempt to capture 7 geese that we keep seeing on a small
lake nearby. 5 of these birds we are sure are moulting and flightless,
but the other 2 arrived later so possibly can fly. The lake is small and
roughly circular with thin sea ice in the centre restricting the birds
to a narrow channel between the shore and the ice. The plan is a pincer
movement.with Chantelle driving the geese using a Zodiac boat from the
top of the lake down towards our net in the bottom left on the shore.
Myself and Tom were hiding on the shore but when the geese pass by we
appear and help drive to the net on the corner. Freydis is in another
boat acting as a backstop to prevent geese from swimming past the net.
Sean walks out to close the gap between himself and Freydis and we
advance closing the trap and drive the geese onto to the shore into the
net. At the last minute 2 geese remember they can fly and escape easily
but the other 5 are caught. 2 birds caught have rings already (BTRR and
ZPWB) and are a pair. They were previously caught at the Cadburys pitch
and putt in North Dublin back in February. The whole process was very quick; credit to
Sean for the master plan.
Afterwards we celebrate by opening our special maple biscuits. They are
like custard creams but maple-shaped and filled with a maple-infused
custard cream. They are by far our finest biscuit.
PS from Stu... the maple custard creams are not that great......