A family of geese on top of an Edmonton hospital is welcoming six new members — and you don’t have to go on a wild goose chase to catch what is probably the most adorable reality TV event of the summer.
Last month, two Canada geese — nicknamed Alex and Zandra — settled into the rooftop Healing Garden at Edmonton’s Royal Alexandra Hospital, and staff there set up a webcam streaming live on the platform Twitch to monitor the parents-to-be.
The happy couple’s eggs began to hatch Thursday, when tufts of bright yellow feathers could be spotted beneath mom Zandra’s wing. Keen viewers over the next few days will be able to spot the babies taking their first steps, waddling around and doing other cute baby goose things. It’s the perfect way to procrastinate a long day at work or a way to forget about the final season of ”Game of Thrones.”
Royal Alexandra Hospital site executive director Janie Clink says hospital staff and webcam viewers alike have been eagerly anticipating the goslings’ arrival.
“We’ve been waiting and watching over the past few weeks,” Clink says. “Everyone’s excited that they’re here.”
Royal Alexandra Hospital medical photographer Ken Dalton has chronicled the parents since their arrival, and his pictures of the new goslings are almost too much to handle.
Clink says she thinks it makes perfect sense why Alex and Zandra chose to nest at the hospital.
“Well, we’re a leading edge birthing centre,” she laughed. “So I’m sure that’s why they chose us.”
The hospital has closed off the garden for both the safety of the geese and hospital staff. On the advice of conservation officers, they’ve also installed a ramp to help the new babies navigate from the planter where Alex and Zandra have nested down to the water. Clink says that while this is the first year a family has taken up residence at that spot in the hospital’s garden, it might not be the last.
“The conservation officers have told us they generally will come back each year,” she said. “So we’ll have to keep a lookout.”
Last month, hospital staff held a naming contest for the babies. Keep an eye out for little Albert, George, Louise, Victoria Maud and Alexander on the stream!
The Royal Alexandra Hospital in Edmonton is just the latest spot to welcome some feathery bundles of joy. Spring is in the air, and if you need more baby birds in your life — because everyone does — check out these other nest-cams across Canada:
The City of Vancouver operates a series of user-controlled webcams focusing on the popular heron colony that nests in Stanley Park every year. Ever wondered what a baby heron looks like? Spoiler: big and cute. Chicks started to hatch in mid-April and can be viewed in over a dozen nests at the popular park.
Last month, a chick was born at the Northern Spotted Owl Breeding Centre in Langley, B.C. Experts estimate there are only 10 northern spotted owls left in the wild. You can watch the chick — currently known as “Chick F” — grow up on the centre’s livestream.
The Canadian Peregrine Foundation operates webcams, too, at various locations across Toronto and southern Ontario for all of you falcon fans.
The Hancock Wildlife Foundation also runs several eagle-watching cameras across B.C.’s Lower Mainland.