Skip to comments.Outcry over program of euthanizing Canada geese
Posted on 07/04/2010 4:46:21 PM PDT by Willie Green
BRADFORD Readers at UnionLeader.com expressed outrage yesterday that the federal government had rounded up and euthanized 21 Canada geese on Lake Todd on June 23, in a response to at least two property owners' concerns.
For seven years, the geese -- considered the largest, most common water birds -- have been fouling lawns and beaches along the 50-acre pond, which straddles the Bradford and Newbury town line.
Federal officials said two property owners paid for the round up, gassing and killing of the now-flightless geese and their goslings.
Their bodies were frozen and will be chopped up and fed to captive animals, said Carol Bannerman, public affairs specialist for wildlife services for the U.S. Department of Agriculture Wildlife Services in Riverdale, Md.
USDA follows guidelines established by the American Veterinary Medical Association on euthanasia of these birds when they are considered a nuisance, she said. Complaints about Canada geese are on the rise in New Hampshire with the resident population now at more than 30,000. The state has a goal, set by the Atlantic Flyway Council, of 16,000 for the goose population.
Last year, about 43 geese were euthanized in the state at three different locations, up from the year before when there were no euthanizations.
►Decision to euthanize NH geese creates flap (115)
Dick Wright of Newbury, who lives near the lake, wrote letters to the editor of New Hampshire newspapers last week decrying the practice. He said the problem is property owners who create large lawns and fake beaches, which attract the birds to stay.
Bannerman did not disagree that the geese like to eat lawns and stay on them to keep their eye out for predators.
Jared Teutsch, president of the NH Lakes Association, said conflict between the Canada geese and lakefront property owners is on the increase across the state.
He said native shores of brush are in some cases being replaced by lawns and man-made beaches. That is a welcome mat for migratory geese to settle down and nest. Once born here, they return and bear their own young and have lifespans of up to 25 years.
Teutsch said in the state "There has been a lack of emphasis on shrubbing your shore." He noted the revised 2009 Comprehensive Shoreland Protection Act law allows for landowners who insist on such green sloping views of their expensive shorefront to have that, as long as they plant trees.
At www.UnionLeader.com, more than 100 people had posted comments on the story by midnight. The majority were opposed to the practice of eliminating the geese in this way.
Others, however, said Canada geese are becoming a problem and some solution is needed.
One reader argued that if the government were to eliminate the birds, property owners "should be required to alter their property," to discourage more birds from replacing the ones euthanized.
Many wanted the names of the property owners exposed. The government declined to identify them.
Some suggested dogs such as border collies could be employed to keep geese off personal property.
Others suggested an extension to the state's three-week long resident Canada goose hunting season, but others, such as Michael King, lamented that there are not enough hunters to do the job.
Hope Ullman of Wolfeboro said the story disgusted her and said the use of the word "euthanize" was a misnomer.
"It's murder," she said.
Jeb Harkins of Hancock sympathized with the situation and noted that he finds himself having to be careful to not step in Canada goose feces and that they have been a problem on golf courses for years.
A Canada goose can eliminate between a half pound and a pound of feces a day.
Some suggested the government might spend less and be more humane by considering relocation of the birds.
While most of the Canada geese are non-residents, resident populations have quadrupled between 1990 and 2008 along the Atlantic Flyway, according to federal estimates.
Since 1993 complaints have increased three-fold, according to a federal Environmental Impact Statement issued in 2002.
New Hampshire's resident Canada goose hunting season is Sept. 8-25 with a daily bag limit of five and a possession limit of 10. The season ends before non-resident Canada geese begin their migratory flight.
Some suggested an extension of the season and an increase in the bag limit.
Can they come and do the same thing to the squirrel population in my backyard? I’d love to see them gassed and chopped up so I can actually eat my own fruit and vegetables.
they are like flying rats all over long island.
I say round them up when they moult and butcher them for the ‘poor’ instead of giving the poor food stamps...
Dumbasses! One hunter and a 12 ga. would have taken care of the problem.
They're going to have the same problem next year and the year after that until geese are allowed to be hunted in heretofore restricted communities..........
you need a pellet gun or a .22 rimfire with some quiet CB caps. then make a squirrel stew and include your vegetables
What that area needs is comprehensive goose migration reform; perhaps a path to citizenship for the geese who are already there, and a fence along the border to keep more canadians from migrating there...
Why don't they just say that?
You’ve got that right, a .22 LR fits the bill.
Still, you have to practice with the AR, and most of us aren’t likely to cook them, so, earmuffs on and have at it!
Tipical liberals. Always sticking up for illegal aliens.
A few pair of swans for the lake make a beautiful sight, don’t tear of up lawns and make a mess, but keep the geese away!
I have no problem killing the pesky geese. I saw a tv program recently about springer spaniels who are trained to chase Canada geese to keep this very thing from happening. Our springer would have a field day running around chasing birds — and give a good show, too.
Euthanizing humans...A-OK....Euthanizing Geese....NOT-OK
Moments later after the feathers settled, what could be seen were 13 dead geese, blood everywhere, an out of breath dog, and three toddlers who needed therapy. My wife said it was like seen out of Apocalypse Now.
Great story, that makes my day. I’ve hated those evil birds for thirty years or ever how long they’ve been protected. When they cross the street and expect traffic to sit still, I’ve seen a couple of truckers make haste and mash ‘em. I poke ‘em along as to get through but I’ll be damned getting into an accident to avoid hitting one.
“Outcry over program of euthanizing Canada geese”
Well they are too difficult to eat when they are still running around.
There’s a Beatles’ Maxwell’s Silver Hammer joke in there somewhere...
“Moments later after the feathers settled, what could be seen were 13 dead geese, blood everywhere, an out of breath (and very happy) dog,”
Same problem in Virginia. I hate the damn things, they crap everywhere and are impossible to get rid of.
I just read this story to my Jack Russel Terriers. They are all pumped and want to sign up for goose duty.
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