Egyptian Geese Chiswick March 2012

Having been away so often of late for work, I have gotten a little behind with my posting. I saw this pair of Egyptian geese (Alopochen aegyptiacus ), with their new family of eight goslings almost ten days ago now.

The first young waterfowl I have seen in this new nesting season, and a great indicator that finally we are into a new growing season.

Egyptian geese with family

Egyptian geese with family

Never as successful as Canada geese in the UK, these African birds are less commonly seen. In the wild they most often nest in tree cavities, something of a rarity in the UK tree-scape. Also the birds produce their young in February and March, which in the capricious UK climate can become very cold from mild quite rapidly. This past week or so’s warm weather, soon to give way to a relatively cold spell being a case in point.

The goslings are also frequently killed and eaten by carrion crows and herons amongst other predators, neither of which are uncommon along the Thames.

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