Uncommon geese in Munich’s English Garden

Last weekend we went on a city trip to Munich. Among other things, we explored the city center, enjoyed the view from one of the towers of the Frauenkirche (‘Cathedral of Our Dear Lady’), walked through the grounds of the Olympic Park, and marveled at the exhibits in the Pinakothek der Moderne (‘Pinakothek of the Modern’).

One of our most memorable experiences was going to see a play at the Residenztheater with two of our friends from Munich. With them we also visited the gardens of Nymphenburg Castle and the Natural History Museum.

But for me, as a nature lover and photographer, the highlight was the English Garden. I visited this park on Friday at noon, so I had it mostly to myself. For the first hour I walked through the park I only saw a few birds. But when I reached the northernmost part of the park, I noticed a flock of geese.

I did not know the species. So I used my smartphone to identify them. It turned out that they were bar-headed geese. A species not native to Europe. There are only a few populations which have emerged from animals escaped from zoos and the like. Among the 20 or so bar-headed geese, there were also three barnacle geese.

I found the geese grazing in the shade of a tree. So this is where I took my first photos. After a while the geese preferred to stay in the sun and flew over the Eisbach (‘ice brook’, a river which flows through the English Garden). There I managed to get some shots of the geese with the sun glittering on the waves of the river in the background.

After a while someone’s dog chased the geese away from here, so they gathered on the Eisbach and cleaned their feathers on a shallow spot. Here I had great light, beautiful colors and many opportunities to photograph the animals in action.

Before I left the park, the geese went to a shady spot in the park to feed. There, the fall leaves were shining from behind and provided a great background for beautiful shots.

I spent a total of three hours with these beautiful geese. I hope you enjoy the selection of photos I took that day as much as I enjoyed spending time with the geese back then.