Goose’ the young Eider duck gained her name, partly after Tom Cruise’s wingman in the 1986 film Top Gun and partly as her rescuer liked the irony of calling a duck goose!
Jack Childs, 14yrs, had kayaked over to the nearby Trasnagh Island on Strangford for a mini adventure when he came across the sad scene of devastation. Duck nests were trashed and feathers all around with no sign of any surviving ducks. That is, not until he got back to his kayak where a lone tiny duckling sat, in the cockpit seat.
“I lifted her out and looked for adults but there were none. When I turned she had climbed back in!”
Jack phoned his parents asking what he should do and, knowing a friend that could advise them, they agreed he could bring the orphan home and they’d care for her.
“I put her in my hat and she fell asleep on the way back”
Goose loves swimming with the Childs family, Clare says, “ She can stay with us as long as she wants, she is a wild duck after all.”