Fly Fishing Adventures
by Matt Kemp & Matt Chapple
I recently received the following story in an e-mail from Matt Kemp who was fishing Limestone Creek recently near Syracuse, NY. What makes his story more amazing is that I had an eerily similar experience while fishing Cayuga Inlet May 2, 2005. -Matt Chapple
Matt Kemp's Adventure
I was fishing on Limestone Creek and was walking on an island looking on both sides to see where I wanted to fish. All of a sudden I heard a hiss. I looked two feet in front of me behind a tree and the goose shown in the attached pictures attacked me! Because I was looking for fishing holes I didn't even see it coming. Needless to say it scared the daylights out of me. It put its wings out, stood up and went right for my thighs and vest. (Thank God for waders!) I actually jumped in the air and threw my fly rod. I landed on my back, grabbed the fly rod and started crawling away and it pecked at my rear 3 or 4 times! In the process I lost my scissors next to the nest. I certainly wasn't going to fight the goose for them!
So much for a peaceful stroll in the wilderness! It's hilarious to reflect on. My fiancée cracks up every time she thinks about it. However, it was scary! My mom told me a story from Missouri: A father took his four-year-old son out fishing and a goose attacked the child. There was damage to the child's scull requiring more than one surgery.
Thanks for your website. It's really helping me as I start my first season
fishing with a fly rod!
Matt Chapple's Adventure
I was walking along the stream bank looking out ahead across a rather large sand and gravel bar. I saw a nice run on the other side of the sand and gravel bar looked worth fishing, so I proceeded to walk across. The evening was very peaceful. The sun was beginning to set and the air was brisk and clean. I was experiencing the relaxing feeling that fly-fishing brings. Suddenly the peace was abruptly interrupted. I heard something that sounded like flapping wings. Well, it certainly was. A Canada goose flew down nearly hitting me in the head and landed not more than 10 feet away from me on the gravel bar. Then the goose quickly lifted its wings and started to hiss and immediately began to charge towards me. My first instinct was to run. I took off as fast as I could wearing waders, chest pack, and carrying a fishing rod. After a brief sprint of about 20 yards or so I thought that the goose might have stopped. But when I looked over my shoulder he was still charging, so I kept running and eventually came to a railroad bed, which I ran up and was hoping that the goose would not follow. He didn’t. As I walked up the railroad tracks across the creek the goose walked along the gravel bar and seemed to be keeping a keen eye on me. He proceeded to watch me until I was out of sight.
There are many times in the spring that I have seen Canada Geese along the banks of the creeks and rivers in Central New York. I usually avoid them knowing that they are nesting. This time I was in the wrong place at the wrong time. The goose was in flight when it saw me walking near the nest and was able to swoop down and surprise me. Wow was I surprised.
Note: Canada Geese build their nest with grass and plant material and line it with feather down. The geese typically nest on the ground on islands and shorelines. If you accidentally wander into a nesting male's territory while looking for a good spot to Fly-Fish, he'll come after you hissing with wings spread -- they look a lot bigger and move a fair bit faster when they're upset about something.
Canada Geese are large birds, 20 to 50 inches long with a wingspan of 50-68
inches. Their long black neck, black head, crown and bill most easily identify
Canada Geese. Description of the female is the same as the male.