Ethics

Climate Change? Not This Time

It used to be that Canada geese, those endearing and silly honkers, flew south to the United States for the winter, and then came back north. Now they honk around the Okanagan Valley all the long year through.

Honk! Honk! DAWN! Honk! Honk!

Climate change? No, not really. Geese always come early. It’s the only way they can scrounge a prime nesting site and don’t end up nesting on a highway shoulder, which they do anyway when the loons chase them off the best spots of all. They come when the lakes are frozen, they skid around on the ice, they strut around in the late spring blizzards, they get by, they are tough, devoted and reckless. And lazy. If the weather means they don’t have to go south, that’s not  climate change to them. They are always here in this shoulder climate of cold nights and warm days, intermittent snowfall and storm, and all this flying around in near perennial dusk. Perfect early season goose weather. No change at all. The real change in climate comes when humans don’t pay attention to the miracle that is geese…

 Sometimes It’s Dawn, Sometimes It’s Dusk: Who Cares! Honk! Honk! Honkkkk! HonkhonkhonkHONK!

… and addle their eggs so they don’t reproduce, on the principle that they don’t belong here. Don’t belong here? This is their season of glory, even if it lasts all ‘winter.’ The point is, the seasons are not set. They move. It would be better to say “The geese are here,” than to say “It’s winter,” because then we’d get on with what really needs to get done, instead of flying south to Palm Springs.

 

3 replies »

  1. I suppose one could coddle an egg. I know that at one point Park personnel addled goose eggs to prevent them from hatching. It worked. Those eggs didn’t hatch. The last time I checked some of the geese kept reproducing by putting their nests up in some of the big trees in the park.

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