Noticing a Canada goose in distress, Niagara on the Green resident Robin Fisher quickly hatched a plan Monday to rescue the bird that was hanging around the storm pond at Glendale Avenue and Taylor Road.
Priority one was to find a sanctuary for the bird. Priority two was to gather a group of rescuers and priority three was to execute the plan.
The goose, which had been around the pond for about a week, is suffering from angel wing syndrome (also known as slipped wing), which prevents the bird from flying. Left alone as winter approaches likely would mean certain death.
While a number of factors can contribute to angel wing, it can be caused by excessive intake of carbohydrates and sugars, notably from eating bread and other foods, according to various animal experts. That is why feeding geese bread is not recommended.
Fisher contacted the Open Sky Raptor Foundation in Grimsby, which agreed to adopt the bird. She then used the Niagara on the Green Facebook page to find volunteers to help corral the goose.
A group of residents met and plotted their strategy for its capture.
Initially, the bird was quietly hanging out at the busy corner of Glendale and Taylor. But as its rescuers approached, it became wary and embarked on a game of chicken, dodging Fisher and her gang.
The bird fled across Glendale and then across Taylor, which presented a real problem, but the rescuers persisted. Then the Canada goose headed for the White Oaks Resort and Spa.
Fisher and her bird brigade crew pursued their prey behind White Oaks, where “I threw the blanket on him three times and he still ran. It was Alison (Flus) and Tammy (McCarthy) that finally got him down. He was so tired he just gave up. Alison was the one who picked him up and put him in the cage. It went so well.”
The rescuers report that “Chicken,” so named because he played chicken fleeing from his rescuers by crossing two major roadways, is doing fine in his new home at the Open Sky Raptor Foundation.