www.savethegeese.ca

Our Position

         It is our position that NON-lethal geese management is the only acceptable way to control goose populations.  We are NOT saying that large populations are not a problem, nor are we saying that goose droppings aren’t gross!  What we are saying is the geese DESERVE BETTER.  They are beautiful, intelligent and adaptable creatures, and attentive & loving parents.  They do NOT deserve to be killed and thrown out like garbage!   Consider their story:  

         There once was a time when Canada Geese were a species in grave danger.  Why?  The answer is simple — human interference.  We took over and destroyed much of their natural habitat, hunted them in large numbers, and used them as live hunting decoys. 

         In an attempt to make up for the damage that was done to some subspecies, efforts began to try to save them.  Geese eggs were collected from the wild and goslings & eggs were purchased from private farms and raised in captivity to be release into the wild.  Unfortunately, the majority of geese that were raised in captivity never learned how to migrate.  Migration is a taught behavior;  if adult birds are not around to teach goslings to migrate, they never learn this behavior!  So, these captive raised birds were released without the knowledge required to migrate!

         Before it became illegal, hunters used to keep flocks of Canada Geese that were injured or had their flight feathers removed to use as live decoys.  These birds, obviously, did not migrate — nor did any of their babies.   If the parents couldn’t migrate with their babies, the babies didn’t learn to migrate either.  Several generations of birds that stayed in one place year round were created as a result of this practice.  When the practice became illegal, many of these flocks were simply released into the wild.  “Resident” geese populations — populations that did not migrate — were created as a result of these 2 factors.  WE created this problem!  The geese did not just decide to stop migrating; they were born and raised by parents who no longer HAD that knowledge to pass on to their young!

         Another factor in the creation of “resident” populations and in the increasing “migratory population” was also created by man.  While we destroyed their natural habitat, we began to create habitats that were even more favourable to the geese than their natural habitat — golf courses, grassy lawns and parks, large grain fields, etc.  Such places offered geese the best foods available, clean & easily accessible water sources, and security from natural predators.  Many geese decided to stay in warmer locations for the winter due to the abundance of food and the favourable environment.  In other words, we provided EVERYTHING a goose could ever want in a home!  Why fight your way through grasses in an ever shrinking & polluted habitat when you can have a clear path from the water to the food?  Why eat polluted and sparse grasses when you can have perfectly mowed YUMMY lawn grasses?  Why struggle to protect yourself & your young when you can live in a place that is predator free?  Wouldn’t you make the same choices the geese have made if you had to choose between eating out of a garbage and living in a gutter OR eating gourmet and living in a palace?!?! 

         Geese are simply trying to survive and raise families — like you & me.  Why should they be penalized - and sentenced to death - for our interference?  WE created the problem and it is up to US to fix it!   They should NOT be killed because we have interfered with their species. 

         It has also been proven that LETHAL geese management DOESN’T WORK.  It is a short term fix to a long-term problem.  Even when all the geese are killed, future geese will still find the site appealing and will move in.  Also, MORE geese will need to be killed in future years when the babies from previous years return to nest.  NON-lethal methods, such as habitat modification, will still be required to keep the geese away in the long term.  (Please check out the information under the “Geese Management” page for NON-lethal geese management options).   It is our position that instead of killing geese once a problem develops,  non-lethal management methods (including habitat modification) should be attempted right away.  It will need to be done at some point, so why not spare the geese and start with non-lethal methods!?! 

   

Note: The information presented in our description of the “geese story” comes from the compilation of many of the links provided on our website and from our knowledge of the situation.  If you want links to the “exact information sources”, please contact us and we will find them for you. 

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