After the Dusky Canada Geese build their nests on the artificial nest islands and their goslings hatch, they leave their nests. A few weeks after monitoring the success of these nest islands we went back to our field camp out on the delta. This time we were doing nest island maintenance, preparing the islands for nest year. We remove the nest bowls and egg membranes that are left behind. Another part of maintenance is to make sure islands have adequate shrub cover to protect geese and their eggs. Some islands are in good shape and have plenty of shrub cover. Other islands don’t have enough due to beaver damage, muskrat damage, or are just in need of more. We transplant Myrica gale, a native shrub found in the surrounding area of the ponds. Maintaining these islands will help the success of their nests the following year.
Our first week of Nest Island Monitoring we had great weather. It was overcast and sunny while we were out there. This last field camp though we had some rain most of the time we were out there. It made our work more difficult but not impossible. We worked long days digging up Myrica gale and transplanting it to the nest islands. Working on the delta gives us the opportunity to see so much wildlife. Working with a positive group of people also makes our field camp a more enjoyable experience. Even on those rainy days coming back to our camp exhausted after a long day we would make dinner, drink tea, clean and had some good laughs.