A much-loved member of the Cocking family — and local legend — Nigel the Goose has taken out Champion Bird at this year’s Moora Show.
For the family, parents Bree and Jaden and their three children, exhibiting the fruits of their labour at the show has become a cherished tradition, and they embrace everything from form-filling to the slow drive into town on show day with a sense of fun.
“Over the years our children Darcy (16), Quinn (14) and Bart (10) have enjoyed sharing their crops, wool and poultry at the Moora Show,” says Bree. “The excitement starts with the meticulous completion of the entries. Darcy usually handles these, but this year Bart had to complete them in his absence, and it was nice to see him ‘step up’ into the job.
“The best part is helping the kids catch their prized pets, usher them into the front seat of Dad’s ute and head to town. It is a slow drive to keep Nigel calm and ready for the show, plus it can be a tad daunting having his beady eye and long neck a mere centimetre or so from my face while I’m driving!” laughs Bree.
“There’s a fair bit of hissing too, much to the amusement of the kids -— not so much me.”
Returning to the showgrounds after judging to see if they have received a prize is always a highlight, but particularly so this year. “We were absolutely shocked to win, what an honour!” said Bree. “Bart placed and was commended in all of his poultry entries, as well as his crops.”
Beyond the jubilation of a win, exhibiting at the show embodies a great sense of community spirit and connection to their farming heritage, and is a reason Bree would encourage all kids to take the time to get involved.
“It’s a lot of fun — good friendly competition between neighbours and friends. It also inspires the next generation to appreciate and be proud of their agricultural roots.”
Post-Moora Show — like many local legends before him — Nigel stopped off at The Drover’s Inn beer garden before returning to his pen. While his roommates remain unaware of his new champion status, Bree says, “We are super proud of our darling goose.”