Wayward goose adopts East Vail | VailDaily.com

Wayward goose adopts East Vail

Melanie Wong
Vail, CO Colorado
Preston Utley/Vail DailyMonika Perry, of East Vail, reaches out to Emma, a goose that has been at Bighorn Park in East Vail throughout the summer and fall.

VAIL ” A stranded goose has become the neighborhood sweetheart and cause celebre in East Vail.

“Emma” the goose appeared by the pond in Bighorn Park in early summer and has made friends with nearby residents, children and staff at the nearby Vail Racquet Club.

Resident Monika Perry said she thinks Emma got injured and left behind by her flock. Some residents think a family near the park nursed the goose back to health over the winter and let her out into the pond in the summer, but no one seems quite sure where she came from.

“There have been two flocks that come through and she never left,” said Perry, who walks around the pond almost every day with her dog Kaiser.

Emma is extremely friendly and loves to be around people, Perry said.

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“In the summertime kids would play with her. She’d go into the playground. That’s where you’d find her ” with the children,” she said.

Emma seems to have made plenty of friends, following walkers around the pond, eating grass from people’s hands and giving friendly pecks at visitor’s legs.

“Everyone comes in and talks about it,” said Zoe Hubbard, a sales and marketing assistant at the Racquet Club. “All the people in the neighborhood know about her. It has a lot of personality. It’s really sweet.”

But some residents are worried the neighborhood goose won’t survive the winter.

She could get eaten by wild animals, starve when the grass dies or freeze during the winter. Her coat is already a lot thinner and less glossy than it was in the summer, Perry said.

Several residents have been trying to find a home for Emma, calling the Wolcott petting zoo and the Colorado Division of Wildlife, but no one will take her.

“The department of wildlife said she’s probably perfectly able to leave, but we know they travel as flocks. They need a leader,” Perry said.

East Vail resident Carol Rossi said she sees Emma all the time when she walks her dog in the dog park. She has thought about bringing the goose to Denver and dropping her off at a park with some other geese.

“I don’t even know if you can do that,” Rossi said. “But I worry about her.”

Neighborhood residents hope someone will adopt her, especially since the weather has taken a cold turn already.

“It’s so sad, it’s not going to last through the winter,” Hubbard said. “It should have flown south by now.”

Staff Writer Melanie Wong can be reached at 748-2928 or mwong@vaildaily.com.

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