Photos/Video: Goose Family Thrives Near PETA HQ

For Immediate Release:
May 27, 2021

Contact:
Nicole Meyer 202-483-7382

Norfolk, Va. – Construction on the Elizabeth River has left local Canada geese with fewer nesting sites—but goose couple Gail and Bob managed to find the perfect spot: a custom-built platform outside PETA’s Sam Simon Center.

They moved in shortly after PETA created the platform in 2020 and quickly won the admiration of the group’s staff—and earned their names—when the female protected her eggs despite gale-force 70-mile-per-hour winds and the male refused to leave her side, bobbing up and down in the ferocious waves. After raising two goslings last year, Gail and Bob returned this year to the newly revamped platform, now even higher above the water and accessible via two new ramps—and after the pair hatched eight goslings and adopted two more who had been separated from their parents, the little family is happy and healthy.

Additional photos of Gail and Bob’s family are here, and video footage is available here.

“Gail and Bob are perfect examples of the way faithful goose couples are to each other—and the way dedicated goose parents are to their goslings,” says PETA Senior Vice President Daphna Nachminovitch. “PETA hopes their family story will inspire people to make a little space for wild animals, who have so little room left in our overdeveloped world.”

This year, PETA created a wildlife-only section of its waterside property, where all the geese can drink, preen, and rest out of sight of the dogs playing in the Bea Arthur Dog Park—while still visible to viewers of PETA’s dog park webcam.

PETA offers tips for living in harmony with geese—highly emotional and communicative animals who mourn the loss of their mates and eggs and use as many as 13 different calls to warn, greet, and express feelings to each other—on its website. Residents can encourage geese to move on to more welcoming areas (like PETA’s property) by never feeding wildlife, planting shrubs along waterlines, and installing effigies of dogs and other predators.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to abuse in any way”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit PETA.org or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind