Will a custody battle break out over an Echo Park Lake goose named Maria? *

The Wall Street Journal on Friday took a break from its financial coverage to devote attention to Maria, the bossy Echo Park Lake goose.  The story looks at what will happen to Maria, who rose to fame following her appearance in an OK Go music video last year, when Echo Park Lake is drained and closed for about two years during a $65 million clean up. The city does plan to build temporary ponds and has devoted much attention to migratory birds during the closure.  But it’s not clear to what will happen to all the ducks and geese like Maria that make Echo Park Lake their year-around home. The Wall Street Journal said that Dominic Ehrler, who has developed a close relationship with Maria, and others have different ideas about what to do with the celebrity goose once the lake and surrounding park is closed:

“She might end up at MacArthur Park Lake, a few miles away. On Thursday, a zoo biologist examined her and determined she’d be fit to stay and socialize with construction workers to satisfy her need for human contact.

Mr. Ehrler has his own idea: He’ll get a U-Haul, put Maria in the front seat, and the two will migrate to Oregon or somewhere far away where they can walk. One city official cautions that, technically, Maria is property of the state.”

Perhaps Maria should tour with Ok Go during the clean up.

* Update: More about Maria can be found in an L.A. Times story that appeared today.


  1. Hopefully someone who actually knows about these domestics birds steps up to help Maria. She is not a greylag, she is a domestic toulouse goose. She is imprinted and nneds protection from predators at night.

    She requires that water for her to survive the night. Since when is a construction site a safe place for animals to hang out? Which zoo does thi sidiot run???

    If they leave here there to hang out with construction workers is a death sentence. I really hope someone who works in farm animal rescue steps up to take this bird before these people who obviously know nothing about them before these self proclaimed experts end up killing her.

    Its a miracle she has survived this long, chasing cars is cute and all but what happens when she takes off after the wrong motorcycle in traffic? Its all fun and games for the people getting their jollies at her expense but when does someone step up who cares about her? Cares enough to get her into a safe home, an appropriate environment for a farm animal goose??

  2. I agree with Grtno7. Maria is a dumped domestic goose. She is a toulousse goose and was likely a hand-raised pet then dumped at a park. Just like those gang of 4 pekin ducks. Those are not wild and not native and none of them belong at a public park. Hopefully a rescue group like Farm Sanctuary can take them in. Please let everyone you know it is not okay to dump domesticated animals at public parks. They are in great danger there, and they also mess up the environment for the wildlife.

    Take care, sweet Maria. I am sorry you were dumped and I hope your good friends do what is best for you.

  3. Please be aware that the city has made no real provisions for any of the animals at Echo Park Lake. My concern as well, are the turtles!! Some group is going to take them and give them away to individuals?? Talk about mass slaughter — the city has been absolutely unconscionable in this area. It’s not even clear that the millions they are spending are really going to clean up the lake in any case. Where’s a real animal defender when we need them???

  4. I know of a family that dumped the geese off when they had to move. It’s really tragic. I am amazed they’ve survived as long as they have. It’s a little crazy how often I see people photographing Maria at the park. Personal feelings aside, I hope this attention will get the turtles and ducks placed in the right environment.

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