Papa Goose Fly Away Home
Bonaventure Meadows Public School
London, Ontario

By Sarah (grade 7)

Bill Lishman is a man who went for his dream of actually experiencing the freedom of a bird's flight. In 1993 he took off from his farm, in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, on an incredible journey which many would call impossible. He led eighteen geese south to Virginia, USA!


Lishman's mother, Myra White Cronk, influenced him mostly because of her motivation to go for his dream. Her love for nature was passed on to him at an early age. When Lishman was young and living on his father's cattle farm, he used to watch the Canada geese flying overhead. He learned more and more about them by constantly asking himself many questions: Where were they going? What map within them charts the way? How do they know when to fly? He hoped that someday he would fly with them.

Bill soon learned about imprinting. Most birds will follow anything they see for the first 24 hours of their lives. Bill used this technique to have newly hatched birds imprint on him. Eventually the birds followed Bill in his airplane.

Bill's achievement was so remarkable that it has been turned into a movie called Fly Away Home. It has a little twist in it though. In the movie, it's the daughter that leads the geese south. In April of the following year, the Canada geese returned without help and greeted their surrogate parent.

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