<<Home Niagara Falls Reporter Archive>>

Majestic Geese Can Be Troublesome

Tonight I heard the wild goose cry, Wingin' north in the lonely sky.

Rarely has a member of the wild kingdom inspired as much song and legend as the storied Canada goose, majestic and long-lived bird familiar to us all. The flocks of Canada geese, returning from their southern winter havens, their calls heard overhead, are a welcome sign of spring.

However, because of local-nesting, more and more geese are not migrating and have become year-round inhabitants of parks, ball fields, waterways, farms, residential areas and golf courses, where they can be quite a nuisance.

Canada geese are overabundant throughout the state, according to the state Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC). New York’s “resident” Canada goose population is estimated at more than 200,000 birds statewide, despite the annual harvest of more than 50,000 geese during hunting season.

Hunting remains the most important method for managing the size of the resident and migrant goose populations.

Many “migrant” Canada geese also pass through New York to their northern Canada breeding grounds, and some people consider them pests for their droppings, bacteria in their droppings, noise, and confrontational behavior.

For farmers, geese raid crops, and they are suspected of being a cause of an increase in high fecal coliforms at beaches.

The law allows people to rid themselves of pest geese by disturbing them or destroying their eggs. Anyone can chase geese away from an area without physically harming them, without a permit.

Dogs are sometimes used to chase geese away.

DEC issues a General Depredation Permit (GDP) that allows “egg-addling” in New York State. Egg-addling involves treating goose eggs to prevent hatching, either by puncturing the eggs or coating them with corn oil.

After registering on-line at https://epermits.fws.gov/eRCGR/, one may oil or puncture any number of nests or eggs of Canada geese from property they own or manage or have the property owner's permission.




Niagara Falls Reporter - Publisher Frank Parlato Jr. www.niagarafallsreporter.com

Apr23, 2013