Adult Snow Goose on Willow Pond

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Lone Snow Goose on Willow PondLone Snow Goose on Willow Pond – Nikon D500, f7.1, 1/5000, ISO 640, Nikkor 500mm VR with 1.4x TC, natural light

I didn’t get to go out photographing early yesterday morning because I was trying to finish up a project and because I was nursing a very sore leg, my leg was sore because at 3 am I was awakened by a really bad Charley Horse in my right calf. Hours later my calf was still sore and it was painful to walk. It is still painful this morning.

Later on in the day I went down to Willow Pond hoping to photograph some Redheads or Common Mergansers that have been hanging around but the Redheads were too far away and when the three Common Mergansers flew in they went to the far side of the pond too. There were several hundred Canada Geese on the pond and because I have seen reports of Cackling and Snow Geese in the area I scanned the pond with my lens and spotted a lone Snow Goose. I don’t get to see or photograph Snow Geese often so I took images of it even though it didn’t get as close as I would have liked it to come. I was just happy to see one.

We do get a few Snow Geese on migration during the fall and winter but not nearly as many as in spring migration. One of the things I have on my “to do” list is to head to Delta, Utah during spring migration and photograph the large flocks of Snow Geese that come through there then. I hope to make that happen this coming spring.

Life is good.


I came home and yesterday afternoon read some news about thousands of Snow Geese that died after nearly 10,000 of the geese landed on Berkeley Pit, a toxic open pit mine in Butte, Montana at the end of November.  I had read about them landing there on a Facebook group I am a member of but only saw the article about them dying yesterday. I am disgusted that these open pits with toxic waters have not been cleaned up and that wildlife dies because of it. There is simply no excuse for this.

Butte mine officials: Snow geese deaths number into the thousands

Thousands of snow geese die after landing in toxic Montana mine pit


  1. Elephant's Child December 7, 2016 at 11:42 am

    Hiss and spit.
    Sometimes (too often) it is very hard to feel proud of our species.
    Sorry about the cramp. Know them, and the bruised aftermath too well.

  2. Patty Chadwick December 7, 2016 at 8:51 am

    Beautiful bird…sorry about leg…know too well what that’s like…wish all those involved with those mines were forced to drink the water they’ve allowed to he poisoned…I’m so sick of humans at this point!!!

  3. Liz Cormack December 7, 2016 at 7:48 am

    Beautiful image of the Snow Goose. I suppose the owner of the open pit mine will not even be fined. Horrific. I must have been in sympathy with you a day late. I woke up at 3am this morning with a Charley Horse. Painful.

  4. Bob mcpherson December 7, 2016 at 7:25 am

    Beautiful photo, Mia. Such bad news about the Snow Geese dying. One of our main jobs is to be caretakers of the Earth.

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