RIP Thomas: Blind, bisexual goose caught in love triangle in New Zealand dies at age 40

Bird lovers are mourning the loss of another beloved, if not unusually betrothed, feathered friend.

Just a few days ago the world lost Nigel, the world’s saddest bird who was enamoured with a concrete gannet. And now, Thomas, the goose with the world’s most inclusive family life, is gone.

“It is with a heavy heart, we announce the passing of our beloved blind goose Thomas,” folks with the Wellington Bird Rehabilitation Trust announced this week.

Thomas, you see, had a male black swan mate named Henry. They were together for decades. That was until a female swan named Henrietta swooped in and stole Henry’s heart. But Thomas stuck around to raise many babies with them. Thomas did father his own children with another goose, even though they were stolen by another male, leaving Thomas somewhat befuddled.

Thomas was 40 when he passed away in Waikanae, New Zealand.


Thomas was at the centre of this most unusual family unit. Wellington Bird Rehabilitation Trust/Facebook

The rehabilitation facility where Thomas spent the final years of is life is sharing his most unusual love story.

“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!”

That was until Henry died in 2009 and Henrietta moved on.

Thomas really was a devoted family bird. Wellington Bird Rehabilitation Trust/Facebook

Thomas suffered recently from health issues. He became blind in one eye and then both. But it didn’t really slow him down.

“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!)” added the facility, which was founded by Craig Shepherd.

Thomas was well-known i in the region and around the world. Wellington Bird Rehabilitation Trust/Facebook

“Thank you Thomas for proving that there is life even after sight,” the bird sanctuary wrote. “You were a true inspiration for the work we do and the things we are able to achieve for the animals in our care.”



Fittingly, Thomas will be buried next to Henry later this month.

RIP Thomas the goose. Wellington Bird Rehabilitation Trust/Facebook

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