The water is rising and time is running out for a mother goose and her unhatched eggs precariously placed on an island in the middle of the Animas River.
From atop the pedestrian bridge near Rotary Park, the drama unfolds.
On Thursday, the mother goose was frantically toiling about a small island of grass that was slowly becoming submerged as water levels rise in the Animas River, reaching 2,420 cubic feet per second by the afternoon.
Her loyal mate for life, perched above the tower of the adjacent railroad bridge, looked on, helpless.
Both seemed fated to lose about five eggs nestled in the middle of the island. Frustrated, the mother goose resigned herself to incubating the eggs, and it’s unclear how much longer they need to hatch.
Goose eggs generally take 28 to 35 days to hatch. And with continuing warm temperatures expected in the next few days, it may be only a matter of time until the waters overtake the small outcrop.
Cue the intense narration of Planet Earth’s Sigourney Weaver.
But in all seriousness, pedestrians catching sight of the distressed situation on Thursday, promptly stopped to take pictures and exclaim on the harshness of nature.
According to Joe Lewandowski, the Durango-based Colorado Parks and Wildlife spokesman, the agency as a rule does not interfere with the natural process, no matter how compelling.
“Geese have been laying eggs there for years, and unfortunately, this year the water is coming up,” Lewandowski said. The adult geese will leave the area, and then they’ll be back to reproduce next year.
“There’s a lot of geese throughout the area,” he continued.
“And again, nature takes it course, and that’s usually the best way to let things go. It’s tough out there in the wild.”