As mentioned before, we have a gander called Godfrey who is like the Godfather and looks after the rest of the gaggle. He is so overprotective of the younger geese that he often bites me, but I adore him. I love the way he has such a proud stance.
He first starting getting bitey with me when we got our first Sebastopol gosling, Pearl, and, not long after, our two Pilgrims, Ola and Seli, and then two more Sebastopols, Diamond and little Woodroffe. When it came time to let these little ones out of their brooder near the Aga, and introduce them to Godfrey, it was fascinating to see him bend his substantial neck down and almost kiss them, making a soft, keening noise. He didn’t respond to the baby ducks or turkeys like this at all – just to the goslings – and from that day onward, they became his property. Except for the fact that he doesn’t like me coming near them, it’s rather lovely. Also, if my nieces or nephews visit, I have to watch him carefully as you can see from this picture taken when they were little.
The gaggle are almost his size now but he is still just as protective and sometimes becomes ferocious. The following is one of my favourite pictures of him. However, it is also the reason I am putting off going out to feed the gang – I am getting sick of him biting me and me having to kick out to defend myself. It ruins the late afternoon ambience somehow and it’s tricky because the rest of the gang surround me lovingly (well, greedily because I have food) while Godfrey tries to amputate both my legs at once.
I am going to try something new in a minute and just focus on him. Wish me luck!