Minnesota wildlife is dangerous (MMP... the Sunday Evening Edition)

I’m posting this really early because I won’t have time before work, and since tomorrow will only be my 5th day at my new job, I don’t think I should be taking time first thing Monday morning to post to the Dope. So it’s the Sunday Evening Edition.

Anyway as many of you know, I just moved to Minnesota from Upstate NY. If you missed it, there’s a story about how the cat did with the move somewhere in last week’s MMP, but I’m too lazy to link to it. I think it was about on page 3 if you’re curious. But overall, the move went well, even for the cat. It was after we got here that the fun began.

As I’d heard, there are lakes and walking/biking/rollerblading trails everywhere here. So one of the first nights here, Mom and I found a really nice path pretty close to my new apartment. “Great!” thinks I. “I will go rollerblading here tomorrow morning.” And so I did. It was very peaceful first thing in the morning when everyone else was headed out to work. (This was the week before my job started.) There were ducks, egrets, and herons on the pond. It was nice and cool, and with far fewer hills than in NY, blading felt great.

It was then that I saw her. A young doe standing by herself in the field. I looked at her. She looked at me. I looked at her. She looked at me. And then for a reason only a deer would understand, she decided to flick her little white tail… and run TOWARDS me.

That’s right folks. On my third day in Minnesota, I came this -----> <------- close to hitting a deer. Not in my car, but while on rollerblades. On which I’m not terribly good at stopping. Yup, it would have been fun trying to explain to my new boss why I couldn’t start work. “Um, so here’s the thing… I kinda hit a deer… No, no, not in my car. I was on rollerblades… No, I’m not making this up!”

So that was incident number 1. Incident number 2 was the next moring. (After 2 mornings and two incidents, I decided the peaceful early morning jaunts just weren’t worth it.)

I was blading along merrily, minding my own business, when I came up over a gentle knoll. As I crested the little hill, I saw a whole family of geese in the path, right in front of me… as I was picking up speed going down the hill. Have I mentioned that I can’t stop?

With much flailing of arms and screeching of wheels, I did manage to come to a halt, but not before thoroughly pissing off the whole family of geese. I spoke gently and quietly to them, hoping they’d just move out of my way. Which they did. Mama rounded up the babies and headed off into the grass and Papa brought up the rear. (At least I think… Mama and Papa look an awful lot alike to me.) I waited until I thought they were sufficiently off the path before starting to move by them. But apparently Papa didn’t think I’d waited long enough.

He started hissing at me. So I started to go by a little faster to get out of his way. But in trying to pick up speed, I had to move my arms a bit. Just for reference, this seems to be a threatening gesture to a goose. So Papa goose decided that I was a Serious Threat and that he needed to take drastic action. He started to charge. Beak open, hissing, running at me. And as he got closer, he spread his wings to look even more threatening.

Well, I certainly felt threatened enough. The adrenelin was pumping, and my feet were moving, but like in a cartoon, no matter how much I moved my feet, my body just wasn’t going. And Papa goose was coming at me.

Fortunately, I have not encountered pissed off geese before, but my father has, so I know what a goose bite can look like. (That’s a whole 'nother story for another night.) Hint: they are not pleasant. I did not want to gain first-hand knowledge of what an angry goose can do.

Somehow, miraculously, my body finally did catch up to my feet, and I eluded the enraged papa goose. And saw an oriole, but even that wasn’t enough to make me want to tempt the fates again by going for another morning rollerblade. Now I go in the afternoon with everyone else. There’s safety in numbers, kids. Remember that.

And have both a good Sunday Night and Monday Morning.

Whee! I’m first!
Good thing you got away from that goose. Geese (or gooses) are nasty critters. And nice OP, taxi. I’m glad you’re having Fun Wildlife Experiences.

Deer . . . check
Geese . . . check
Bear . . .

Geese are strange things. I remember one time I was coming home after a graveyard shift. It would have been about two in the morning. I work in an area called “Technology Park”, which is mostly office style buildings in parklands, with some lakes around it. I’ve seen ducks and other waterfowl, but I was floored when I rode past one of the carparks on my way home, and saw a full-sized, domestic goose sitting under one of the arc-sodium lights. It looked at me, I looked at it. It honked, shat on the tarmac and then turned to look at something off in the other direction.

I never saw it again.

Welcome to Minnesota. The geese here have infested every nook and cranny of the state. At my work they’re all over. We have a rumor of a “Super Goose” running around. It’s stool pile is huge! Four times bigger than normal.

These aren’t …Canada geese, are they?

:: looks around suspiciously ::

Because the ones found around my work are royal pains in the neck, basically mobile poop machines. They cross the lawns of the office park in vast honking herds, and cover the sidewalks with poop. I believe the city is actually trying to cull them.

Yes, they look picturesque from a distance. But so do sheep.

Ever been chased by one?

Incidentally, we get foxes and rabbits wandering across my grandmother’s property in Oakville. I think there were reports of a mountain lion way back in Rouge River, a large ravine / forested park about a five-minute drive from the GTA.

Of course the squirrels valiantly battle the pigeons in Queen’s Park, and the seagulls poop over everything.

(Good Lord, I’m so tired. I had an awful shift at work, I need to sleep. :()

Canadian geese. Scourges of the golf course, I tells ya.

Fuck them. Fuck them all in their collective ear.

Hi, MMP’ers! I just got off work, so I can chime in early too. Not much to say yet, except we went to the Friends of the Library book sale this weekend, and made out like bandits. Today was donation day( pay what you like, and take what you want), and tomorrow is free day(haul 'em off by the boxload if you wanna!)

On the goose front, we live three blocks from a river, and geese like to hang out there. There are two goslings that I have been watching, I hope nobody hits them with their car. There is a duck crossing sign, but nobody pays attention to it. A goose bit me on the butt once, but luckily for me that’s a mouthful only an ostrich can handle, so it didn’t hurt! :smiley:

Gotta go to bed now, more later.

taxi, as others mentioned in passing, geese poop a LOT. And huge. It looks a german shepard got sick and left big green piles all over the place.

And they’re mean. Ok, “protective”, which translates to mean.

He probably waddled his fat goose-ass back to the pond and scratched another notch in the “rollerblader” post.

Mornin’. Great OP, Taxi! I’m glad you’re ok, but dang, that was a funny visual!
We wen to 5 stores looking for a patio set on Saturday, and finally found what we wanted at Sam’s. White table, 4 white chairs, and a gray canvas umbrella - that tilts! It’s purty!

While searching, we also found the perfect bird bath for the back yard. We’ve had this ugly pipe sticking out of the ground for about 3 years now. It was originally for mounting one of those huge satellite dishes from the 70’s. We dismantled the dish a long time ago, but cutting down the pipe never got done (because it’s too big, Tom doesn’t have the tools, etc.) So this bird bath has a big honkin’ <snerk! goose reference> hole in it that is just perfect for covering the pipe.

So of course Tom has to build a base and plant stuff around it. He’s about half done. He finished the shelf in the bedroom, it looks great! We still need to paint it, but we need to paint the whole bedroom anyway. And the hallway, and the two bathrooms. So much left to do!

All I did all weekend was cook, shop for groceries and laundry. We had meatloaf for dinner last night. Yum!

just checking in to say “hmph. Monday. Can’t we get rid of Mondays?” - I’ll read all later

No, but I killed one with a golf ball one time.

The very first job I had as a freshout was at a Navy weapons depot in southern Indiana, and because it was out in the middle of nowhere, a round of golf on the base course was a very popular pastime.

The third hole had a huge water hazard right in the middle of the fairway, and being the rotten golfer I am, I teed off with a wormburner, hitting a goose right in the noggin. It twitched about 3 times, and was dead. Of course, the greenskeeper saw it happen, and turned me in to NIS. Because they had nothing better to do, they hounded me for about 2 months to cop to poaching of migratory waterfowl and destruction of government property. :dubious: I told them to shove it, because it was an accident, and I couldn’t reproduce that shot if my life depended on it.

They never did file any charges on me, so I think they did it for entertainment purposes. Heck, they didn’t even put it in my personnel jacket. :rolleyes:

Last night, VunderWife tried out a recipe for pasta salad, and by following the recipe, made enough to supply a hog roast. We decided to take some over to a friend’s house so it wasn’t wasted. On the way, we saw a guy along side of the road with a shovel, madder than hell, holding a freshly run over mallard. :frowning:

Geese, deer, gators, ducks, coyotes, armadillos, possums, wild chickens (yes, wild chickens!), ducks, cows, skeeters, gnats, love bugs, we got ‘em all here in wondrous south Jawja! Though thankfully or gator and love bug populations are nuttin’ like southwest Flahrdi or all of Flahrdi for that matter. I was mobbed by rampant love bugs last week! I even washed my vehicle twice, well, had it washed.

Great OP Taxi. Glad you’re gettin’ all settled in in Minnisoda. Did I ever mention I’ve been to Minneapolis/St. Paul? It was for work and I spent most of my time in St. Paul. I did get to go to the Maul of Amurrka one evening though. Waaaaaay too much maul for me. I saw snow which is always fun for me, specially when I ain’t gotta drive in it.

Sushi for lunch today!!! YUUUUUUUUUMMMMMM!!! The boss and I are going to lunch and discuss stuff. It’s a good get away from the phones and stuff time and I get to count it as work, plus I get sushi!!!

Welcome, Taxi!

The good news is, the geese are only protective of their young like that for a few months. The rest of the year, they fly away. The doe was probably hiding a fawn, so she was conflicted over which direction to go… Does get hit a lot in spring.

So, you haven’t met all the other fauna yet? Waiting for reports of the gnats (black flies) and skeeters. They are pretty nasty at the moment.

I keep meaning to apologise to folks for only stopping in once to these MMP’s - it is my day off, and I’m pretty over-scheduled the rest of the week. When you get as short a growing season as we have here, time is at a premium!

Geese are mean–but so are swans. My mother tells a story of when we were little, she had taken our laundry to the laundromat on the Cape (Cod) one day. We were at the beach (ah, back in the days when you could leave Big Sis in charge, money for the ice cream truck and depend on your children’s good behavior, but I digress).
She was coming back from the laundromat and driving thru the brackish marshes prevalent on the Cape when she saw a car stopped up ahead. Keep in mind that Cape Cod specializes in 2 lane roads (and I like it that way, but there was no way around). Turns out there is a swan family crossing the road. The man in the car ahead, gets out of his vehicle and tries to shoo the swans along. My mom calls out-“I wouldn’t do that, if I were you.” The man gives her a "women are so stupid look (this was about 1972) and approaches the swan which is coming up the rear. Swan rises up and spreads its wings–mighty impressive, btw. Man ignores these signs and moves in. Swan meets man-breaks man’s arm.

My mother moved his car to the verge, bundled him into her car and dropped him at the ER.
This story gives my mother a great deal of satisfaction. :smiley:

I could tell you about how all 5 kids met a black bear on the Appalachian Trail, but enough Kratt’s Creatures for now…

I am to paint today, and my brother is going to stop by! He is interviewing for a job in Ann Arbor–please, let him get it. It would be so nice to have some family at least in the region. He needs a new job; he was downsized about 6 months ago. :frowning:

I took the boys out to Midewin Prairie preserve (pronounced Mid/day/win, with emphasis on day) yesterday. What a glorious day–just what I needed. Great drive–all rolling hills, greenery and open road (I like to take backroads, not expressways). I have never seen so many bikers. We ate the Launch Pad cafe, complete with a 50 ft green spaceman out front–it’s a tradition with us. The food is not all that good, but there is the Gemini Giant! And it’s on Rt 66! What more could one ask for? Scenic Wilmington IL (it’s a very nice town on the Kankakee river).
Came home and gardened: moved 2 hostas that have gotten too big for their space, watered new plantings, sprayed Roundup on this one slope so that I can terrace it later. I don’t like to use sprays, but I have too much to do to handpick all those weeds. Grilled out (husband did-NOT in the garage :slight_smile: ) and crashed.

Today #1 son becomes a HS freshman. <sob> Where is the little boy with the golden curls who cried when I killed a fly? Damn, it went fast.

VunderBob --they hauled you in for that? Couldn’t they see that the goose had been coldcocked by a Titleist? Dayum!

Swampus -I, too, have been to the Maul of Merika. Never again, is all I can say. And St Paul is deader than dead on a Sunday morning…Never did run into Mary Richards, which was my secret dream… :smiley:

Great OP, Taxi! You’re starting off your Minnesota Sojourn with a bang! I love looking at the Canada geese that stopover here, but I’ve never had any interaction with them. From what I’ve read here, I’m glad!

swampy, so you had fun in Florida? You know, since I’ve met Shibb, there’s just one degree of separation between you and I! And everyone else who’s met Rue. So it’s all a Dopefest in My Mind.

We had a productive weekend; hubbie finished the attic floor, and we spent some time going through the old memory boxes, trying to consolodate. I can’t believe some of the stuff I’ve hung onto. These are boxes that haven’t been opened in 30 years. My middle school grades. Letter from my very first camp boyfriend when I was 14. (I’m a youthful 42 currently.) A 1978 Guiness Book of World Records, which my 8-year-old son is inexplicably enjoying.

Sooooo…today’s subject is suicidal life forms? Okay, then may I introduce the suicidal anole hoard from the courtyard of my office building. See it is completely enclosed on all four sides, open to the sky and full of lovely lizardy hidey places like about a gazillion river rocks. The population has grown exponentially since the building went up and some of the reptiles are hell bent on leaving this plane of existence for the next one. How do I know this? Because you can’t walk across the damn courtyard without half a dozen of the things running directly under your feeties. :mad:

Great OP, taxi! I’m sure before long you’ll have the wildlife at bay. BTW, if geese are like ducks, then the boys have a curly feather at the end of their butt.

Not much to report about the weekend except I got the hairs cut and no longer look cockerish. I also made sauce and meatyballs. It was good. Got some good books from the liberry including Forever Odd by Dean Koontz. I like it when he revives characters for second books.

That’s it for now.


Morning, all! taxi, I’m glad to hear you’ve survived (so far).

Saturday I went to a very boring wedding. A few readings (Love is gentle, love is kind, etc.), recictation of standard vows, done. Followed by a dull reception with a cover band playing the blandest of the 60s and 70s. There was nothing of the bride and groom’s personalities in any of it, and I got the feeling it was all geared more towards their parents. Her ring was beautiful, though. And my stepsister/roommate confided that she’s tired of waiting for her boyfriend/my other roommate to propose. Time for me to have a little chat with him.

Last week I came upon a young bear and a couple of moose while I was driving (I live due north of Minnesota). The bear and I watched each other for a while, but I did not stop to commune with the moose.

On Saturday, half a dozen of us piled into an outrigger canoe for a spin about the habour. There were a couple of large flocks of seagulls and cormorants, and a small flock of Canada geese. I can’t say I have a great appreciation of any of those species. Seagulls harass you at lunch, but outside of Alfred Hitchcock movies, are not too harmful. Canada geese crap all over everything, making a day in the park less than pleasant, but for the most part do not do too much harm up here. Cormorants, however, are truly nasty. Their crap is so toxic that it kills the vegetation in which they nest, and they eat so many fish that their predation has become a problem down on the lower Great Lakes. Now they are moving up here, and have colonized our breakwall. Drat!

If the weather is good, next Sunday we’ll put together a twin hulled 12 person outrigger, go for a paddle in the islands south of town, and have a BBQ on one of them. No cormorants there.