Why you should consider Humane Nest Management
If you own or manage property used by the public, you are aware of your responsibility to maintain a safe environment. The reality of goose overpopulation includes the potential for accidents. In addition to the slip hazard of feces, geese are famous for their defense of nest sites. The gander (male goose) will do whatever it takes to protect his nest, his mate, and his offspring. This can lead to any number of dangerous situations. It is in your best interest to avoid problems by preventing them. The first step is to limit the population through humane nest management.
Nest management is a long-term, proven effective method of stabilizing goose populations. Replacing already laid eggs with wooden ones will keep new geese from hatching. Discouraging future nesting with dogs or other scare tactics keep populations stable. We have seen how effective these methods are in years to come. Modifying the landscape, so geese find your property less inviting, is another important step. Adding native grasses and other plants will deter geese from nesting, while increasing the natural beauty of the surroundings.
The Alternatives are Short-Term and Costly
Too often people go for a quick-fix, which is rarely a long-term solution. Taking matters into your own hands by shooting, poisoning, or relocating is not only inhumane, it is illegal. Canada geese are a federally protected species.
Roundups, sanctioned by the Department of Conservation, are a legal but cruel, expensive, and temporary alternative. A roundup involves trapping the geese at their most vulnerable stage - while molting. During their molt geese cannot fly, so they cannot escape. They are loaded onto trucks and taken to slaughter. Any goslings (very young geese) are taken separately to an undisclosed site and left to fend for themselves. Many do not survive.
Roundups always take place in the early hours of the morning, when no one is around to witness them. Property owners may try to mitigate the bad PR of a roundup by claiming the meat goes to food pantries. It is hardly charitable to dump old goose meat (from birds who have been eating chemical laden grass), onto the disadvantaged.
Unless the conditions that welcomed these geese in the first place are altered, the void will be filled by new geese, and the cycle begins again.