Residents concerned about the plight of a goose in west Conway may rest easy now. Quick-moving, quick-thinking Grey Lovelady caught the goose and freed it from the construction netting around its neck.
Lovelady, 20, said he was walking to get ice cream with his family Saturday in the Scherman Heights area when his stepfather explained that there was a goose in the neighborhood that has received a lot of attention because of its predicament with the netting.
Arkansas Game and Fish Commission personnel tried three times to catch the goose without success. Community members also tried to net "Bruce the Goose" or "Scherman," as it was named.
During the Game and Fish’s latest attempt earlier this month, David Goad, chief of the Wildlife Division, said officers would wait until the goose molted in May to try and catch it because it would be unable to fly.
"My stepfather suggested that I might be able to catch the goose," Lovelady said.
Lovelady and his family had just left an ice cream parlor when he saw the goose at the pond near the corner of Salem Road and College Avenue.
"My niece and nephew thought it was hilarious. I had just walked out of the Marble Slab Creamery and they were getting ice cream," Lovelady said. "I tried to walk up to him and do the same thing Game and Fish had and he jumped on my head."
He said the goose has become aggressive because he is protecting five goslings and a mate.
"People across the
street and my family were watching. I thought, ‘If he is going to jump up and attack me, I’ll jog up and grab him first,’" Lovelady said. "I backed off and let him get on shore, then I jogged up and grabbed him as he jumped on me and put my hands around his neck. After that it was easy," he said.
Lovelady said the netting was wrapped tightly around the goose’s neck and had worn a space beneath the bird’s feather line.
"I laid him on the ground and grabbed (the plastic netting) from both sides and pulled it apart," he said.
Lovelady admitted to three or four failed attempts at catching the goose.
"My stepdad said we should go back to the house but I said I would try one more time. I was having fun anyway."
Lovelady, a freshman at the University of Central Arkansas, said he enjoys hunting and fishing and has experience in handling animals.
His major is undeclared, but he said he is "leaning" toward a future with Game and Fish, or maybe business accounting.
"I’m a house divided right now," he said.
(Staff writer Courtney Spradlin can be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 505-1236. To comment on this and other stories in the Log Cabin, log on to www.thecabin.net. Send us your news at www.thecabin.net/submit)