Seven years ago on a back road just outside of Power, a wild goose chase started. The story behind it, though, is even wilder.
Roger Gettel spent years raising birds at his home outside of Power. Chickens, chukars, pheasants, to name a few.
He doesn't raise them these days, but still has a bird or two come visit his house every year. He and a neighbor helped hatch a goose egg seven years ago.
"John brought it over and we threw it in the incubator and the dang thing hatched and it lived with the chickens for that whole summer and winter," Gettel recalled.
"Then it kind of took flight and it just took off. He came back a couple of times, but then we didn't see him. After that he was gone. Then the next spring he came back and he's perched on the kids' fort in the yard and he comes back every year now."
They named it after the man that found him, John Burgmaier. How did he find the egg though?
"I was driving down the county road for two Canadian honkers that flew up in front of me. And as they got about 10 to 15 feet above the road, right in the middle, the lady goose laid an egg and the egg fell from her. And I watched it and landed right in the middle of the road thinking it was just going to splatter. I turned around and grabbed the egg and I saw there wasn't a crack in it."
They don't know for certain whether it's a boy or girl, but every spring the goose and its mate come back to their familiar territory. You could call the goose one in a million, not only surviving a 15 foot drop, but being found immediately, incubated, and hatched a month later.
"I'm really happy that it did hatch, you know, because it's, well, what could I do," Burgmayer said. "I said, okay, I'll give it to Roger."
With plenty of open space and water around their home, the Gettels anticipate the goose coming back for years to come.
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