Image for Goose or barnacle?

Goose or barnacle?

Duration: 00:51

Barnacles geese are rare visitors to southern Europe and do not nest there. So in medieval times people decided that they didn't lay eggs and were born another way. Because goose barnacles have feather-like arms, barnacle geese were believed to hatch from them. There are illustrations of the process in medieval books. The truth is that the geese lay their eggs in the Arctic. But the names of barnacle goose and goose barnacle have stuck.

Available since: Thu 24 Feb 2011


Andrew NEAL

This clip is from

First Eden Episode 3:THE WASTES OF WAR

3/4 David ATTENBOROUGH pres 3rd prog about the Mediterranean Sea & the lands surrounding it. This prog looks at how human migration, wars & the growth of trade in medieval times transformed the lands around the Mediterranean.

First broadcast: 22 Mar 1987

Image for Episode 3:THE WASTES OF WAR Not currently available on BBC iPlayer

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