May 10, 2015 5:42 pm
Updated: May 10, 2015 8:55 pm

Mother’s Day surprise: Goslings hatch on Edmonton balcony


WATCH ABOVE: A goose who laid her eggs on an Edmonton balcony, and attracted worldwide attention via a livestream of the unusual nesting spot, is now a mother.  Eric Szeto explains what happens next. 

EDMONTON — Lucy the Goose’s goslings have hatched just in time for Mother’s Day. Last month the mother goose set up a nest on the 10th floor of a downtown Edmonton balcony.

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Benjamin Lavin made the discovery at his apartment in early April.

“The first few days she was there I thought she was just hanging out,” he said. “A few days later I noticed eggs on my tomato planter.”

Lavin set up a webcam to watch his unexpected houseguest lay five eggs. He wanted to keep an eye on them from school and work, as he was worried about what might happen to the goslings when they hatch.

“It is quite normal for geese to nest at high elevations,” said Kim Blomme, Director, Wildlife Services, Wildlife Rehabilitation Society of Edmonton, who added geese nest up high in the wild as well.

“So even in the wild we can’t say for sure that the whole batch is going to survive.”

“But in an urban environment if they end up landing on concrete, they can definitely take a bounce, it isn’t certain death, but it’s definitely a harder surface than landing in a yard or grass,” she added.

The Canada goose is protected under federal law, so moving the animal and her eggs before the hatch was not an option. Worried the goslings wouldn’t survive the 10-storey trip to the ground, Lavin called the Wildlife Rehabilitation Society of Edmonton for help.

“I think the plan is, once Lucy goes down to the street and starts calling for the babies to come down, then I’ll be able to go out there and put the goslings in a box,” said Lavin.

“I’m just going to take them down to the street level and then, you know, help them across the roads to wherever they’re going to get to.”

Lavin is anticipating the move will go-ahead sometime within the first 24 hours of the hatching.

“It’s been interesting. It’s been a very unique experience to be able to watch the whole process, from her scouting out her nest in the first place, to then laying the eggs and incubating them, and now hatching them. It’s been really cool,” he said, adding it will be different once his houseguests are gone.

“I’ll be able to use my balcony without being hissed at.”

To try and catch a glimpse of the new goslings before they leave the nest, visit Benjamin Lavin’s blog.

© 2015 Shaw Media

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