This is one of those stories that proves human beings aren’t the only ones with complicated love lives… Thomas, a bisexual goose from New Zealand, first rose to celebrity when he was a young male in a simple gaggle at Waimanu Lagoon. There, he was observed shunning the lady geese in favor of the company of a male black swan named Henry.
The couple was together for 18 happy years before a female swan, Henrietta, flew into the picture…
Check it out from IFLScience:
Henry and Henrietta began to nest together, but instead of the traditional monogamous pair bond normally shared among both geese and swans, Thomas stuck around and they became a dedicated triangular unit.
Thomas was an invested parent to Henry and Henrietta’s 68 cygnets over the next 12 years, during which time the family was a regular and much-cherished sight at Waimanu.
Henry passed away in 2009, after which Henrietta found a new partner and Thomas finally tried mating with a female goose. Tragically, the young goslings were adopted by a different male, leaving Thomas alone once more. When he became blind in both eyes in 2013, Thomas was brought to the nearby Wellington Bird Rehabilitation Trust to pass his remaining years.
Naturally, Thomas became the poster goose for the LBGTQ community in the animal kingdom, and news of his passing evoked messages of condolence from all over the world…
One Twitter user posted:
“My poor, brittle, polyamorous, bisexual heart is exploding.”
My poor, brittle, polyamorous, bisexual heart is exploding.
— Zachary Zane (@ZacharyZane_) February 7, 2018
And the Wellington Bird Rehabilitation Trust eulogized him in a post on their popular Facebook page:
It is with a heavy heart, we announce the passing of our beloved blind goose Thomas.
Thomas, in his almost 40 years of life, made an impact on many people and their lives. While we have cared for, loved and cherished him in recent years, Thomas originally befriended and made a name for himself with the lovely residents of the Waimanu Lagoon in Waikanae who watched over him for more than 25 + years.
Thomas became a favourite after segregating himself from the other geese in the area and instead choosing a black swan named Henry as his life-long mate. Even when Henry found a swan mate (Henrietta) this didn’t stop Thomas from staying true and loyal and even playing “uncle” to their cygnets when hatched!
Thomas came into the care of WBRT in 2013 to ‘retire’ after having a series of health issues and becoming blind in one eye and eventually becoming blind in both eyes.
We have loved having Thomas as a part of the WBRT Family and have treated him with extra special love and care! He lived for corn on the cob and if it wasn’t there when we put him back into his house at night, he was not happy!
As well as making other blind bird friends to spend his days with Thomas helped foster a couple of broods of cygnets along the way (for nostalgic reasons and boy, did he do a good job!). He even became so famous at one point, he used an alias of “Timothy” in a news report.
Thank you Thomas for proving that there is life even after sight. You were a true inspiration for the work we do and the things we are able to achieve for the animals in our care.
Thank you to all those people who loved, cared for, and were a part of Thomas’s life. He was such a special boy and a wonderful character.
Thomas, our good friend, we miss you wholeheartedly but may you rest in peace.
Rest in Peace, Thomas!
Have you ever seen an interspecies love affair?