First Brood

by Carl Strang

Last week the first Canada goose brood of the season appeared on Mays’ Lake.

There were 6 fresh downy goslings.

There were 6 fresh downy goslings.

Where had they come from? There was only one nest on Mayslake Forest Preserve, but they could have followed Trinity Lake (which winds for a considerable distance west and north from the preserve) and crossed to Mays’. I checked the nest in the parking lot marsh, and sure enough, it was empty.

The nest did not appear disturbed, and the membrane of an apparently hatched egg is visible on the side of the muskrat house.

The nest did not appear disturbed, and the membrane of an apparently hatched egg is visible on the side of the muskrat house.

Unfortunately the water still is too deep to reach the nest and count hatched eggs. I tried, but that marsh is in a steep-sided bowl and I was to the tops of the hip boots within a few steps from shore. I will have to wait for the water level to drop, and hope the nest is not too deteriorated for me to get some sense of how many eggs hatched.

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