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Surprise: Gary is actually Gloria

By WILLIAM PAINE

william.paine@southwesttimes.com

Due to unforeseen events, Gary the Goose, who was adopted by the Pulaski County High School Agriculture Department, has undergone a name change.

As readers may recall, in the Fall of last year, a goose was seen prowling around the PCHS athletic field and other places around campus. Sara Jo Jones, PCHS Agriculture teacher, decided to keep the goose and use it in her class as a means of showing her students how to care for livestock.

An enclosure, complete with a bird shelter was built across from the school’s greenhouse to keep the school’s new goose safe and comfortable. After some thought, the class decided to give the name Gary to their newfound feathered friend. It was even determined to find Gary the Goose a female to keep him company, as both students and teachers worried that he was lonely for a mate. The call to find Gary Goose a mate went out in the Southwest Times and before long, a local farmer donated a duck, who was immediately given the name Dahlia … Dahlia the Duck.

All was well. Gary had his mate and Dahlia had hers and though one was a duck and the other a goose, well, that was the point. Ducks and geese rarely produce offspring and Jones didn’t want the two birds to mate and produce a gaggle between them.

They needn’t have worried.

“Tuesday we found two eggs out in the pen,” Sara Jo Jones explained. “One was small and one was large and we assumed that Dahlia the Duck labored really hard to have the large egg. A couple of my students, Parker Nestor and Camille Eller told me very adamantly that I was wrong and that Gary Goose must have laid that egg. The next day we were outside putting metal on the roof of their new house and Gary was in the nesting box, scratching around and when he got out of the box, there was an egg.”

It was that same day that Gary the Goose transformed into Gloria the Gander.

“We are now 100 percent confident at this time that Gloria is Gloria,” stated Jones.

Aside from learning how to maintain livestock, there are other advantages to keeping two female birds.

“The warm weather last week must have encouraged them to lay eggs,” said Jones. “Dahlia has laid three and Gloria has laid two.

The eggs are now being stored in the industrial refrigerator in the school’s ag. department.

“A couple of boys from the welding class ate a duck egg but we haven’t eaten any others,” said Jones. “We’re going to sell them. I know we have faculty members that are interested.”

A single goose egg is enough to make a decent sized omelette as, according to Jones, one goose egg is equivalent to three chicken eggs.

As far as the former lovebirds … “Gloria is definitely the leader and is a little abusive to Dahlia,” Jones reported. “Not that’s she’s hurt her, she’s just bossy.”

Besides Gloria’s bossiness, both birds seem content with their newfound home at the high school. When the warm weather comes, and it always does, Sara Jo Jones and her students should have plenty of eggs in the fridge and the opportunity to try what Gloria the Goose produces.

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