You may see these majestic creatures crossing a road this time of year with up to six or eight chicks following behind them.

This is the time of year when you'll see tragic accidents on the road when pairs of geese are leading their young to water or to feed. You'll also see them walking in larger groups of adults in June and July, that's when they're molting.

Right now in New Jersey, their chicks are just a few weeks old and have a soft, fuzzy yellow coat.

Photo by Jan Meeus on Unsplash
Photo by Jan Meeus on Unsplash

Their parents, especially the males are fiercely protective, so don't try and get too close. They can be nasty and relentless if they fear their young are being threatened.

Most Canada Geese pair with a mate at age three, though some begin this process at two years. Pairs usually stay together for life.

If one member of a pair dies, the other goose usually finds another mate within the same breeding season.

These migratory birds are federally protected and that includes New Jersey.

Many people ask why they walk across busy roads when they can fly. Right at this time they are escorting their chicks and for the next couple of months they will go through a molting process.

Dennis Malloy photo
Dennis Malloy photo

Be prepared to stop for them or other cars doing the same. The chicks grow and develop quickly so if you want to check them out at their cutest before they annoy you, look for them right now at a pond near you.

Opinions expressed in the post above are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Dennis Malloy only.

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These are the best hiking spots in New Jersey

A trip to New Jersey doesn't have to be all about the beach. Our state has some incredible trails, waterfalls, and lakes to enjoy.

From the Pine Barrens to the Appalachian Trail to the hidden gems of New Jersey, you have plenty of options for a great hike. Hiking is such a great way to spend time outdoors and enjoy nature, plus it's a great workout.

Before you go out on the trails and explore some of our listeners' suggestions, I have some tips on hiking etiquette from the American Hiking Society.

If you are going downhill and run into an uphill hiker, step to the side and give the uphill hiker space. A hiker going uphill has the right of way unless they stop to catch their breath.

Always stay on the trail, you may see side paths, unless they are marked as an official trail, steer clear of them. By going off-trail you may cause damage to the ecosystems around the trail, the plants, and wildlife that live there.

You also do not want to disturb the wildlife you encounter, just keep your distance from the wildlife and continue hiking.

Bicyclists should yield to hikers and horses. Hikers should also yield to horses, but I’m not sure how many horses you will encounter on the trails in New Jersey.
If you are thinking of bringing your dog on your hike, they should be leashed, and make sure to clean up all pet waste.

Lastly, be mindful of the weather, if the trail is too muddy, it's probably best to save your hike for another day.

I asked our listeners for their suggestions of the best hiking spots in New Jersey, check out their suggestions:

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