Fieldwork numeracy

6 days + 718 miles + 18 mosquito bites + 4 different ways of carrying the tripod + (most importantly) 180 resightings

I’ve had a lot of geese fly over me recently. At close range, this is always a nerve-racking experience because a goose taking off will reduce its body weight as much as possible, raining down droppings upon those below. At a distance it’s still frustrating because geese can travel a long way at a low level, making placing their destination difficult. They’re all firmly out of the moult now and this year’s young are almost all adult sized.

Fieldwork shot from tiny phone camera

I’m also starting work on developing an abdominal profile index for the geese. This gives us a rough estimate of body condition, which can be related to how many parasites the geese carry and how successful it is as a forager.


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