Nene Goslings Getting Around

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Nene Goslings Getting Around

Posted by: Kim Steutermann Rogers
Destination: Kauai
Dec 09, 2008

What do I do with these flipper-feet?

It’s  nene nesting season at Kilauea Point National Wildlife Refuge on Kauai.  That means beware the daddy nene.  He guards his family’s nest site of two to five eggs as defensively as a hockey goalie.  And he’s not afraid to leave his territory to chase down an interloper like me.  Once the eggs hatch, though, goslings venture out to feed and dad’s diligent ways relax, although the family group will stick together until the goslings can fly, usually 11 to 14 weeks after hatching.  Here, the gosling’s wings are quite undeveloped.

I have still yet to spot any humpback whales; however, I am assured others are seeing the early migrants from the spectacular vantage point of the refuge.  So, I am patiently practicing patience, which is ironic, because that’s exactly what I encourage our visitors to do when they stumble upon a sleeping seal on the beach.  “Is that all they do?” the camera-toting visitor asks.  “If you just wait,” I say, “They may even roll over.”  One day–soon, I hope–I will glance up and behold a breaching whale.  Maybe even two.  Soon.

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