Migration can be a difficult time for some birds as the juveniles sometimes are not strong enough to make the long journey.
This autumn has been a wonderfully quiet time at the wildlife centre as the unusually long, warm season has made migration easier for the birds, resulting in fewer injuries.
We did, however, recently receive two juvenile Snow Geese, one from Eckville and one from Springbrook, who became thin, tired, and unable to continue the flight. Snow Geese can fly up to 95 km/h and cover 1000 km without stopping. No wonder they need to be fit! Luckily, they were found by caring members of the public. One was picked up off the side of the road while the other needed our staff to come and help capture it. Both have gained weight since their arrival but will have to overwinter with us as they won’t be strong enough in time to catch up with the other migrating Snow Geese.
Snow Geese leave Alberta and head to warmer climates in southern BC, southern Ontario, and as far south as Mexico. These birds fly in huge flocks as they head south from their breeding grounds on the tundra in the far north, with as many as 500,000 being seen at one time!