Wisconsin’s Lac Belle Management District (LBMD) and Oconomowoc Lake Village Administration think there are too many Canada geese in their respective areas.
So they have approved Canada goose roundups, which are likely to happen in June.
But Friends of Animals disagrees.
These areas don’t have a Canada goose population problem—the problem is a few intolerant residents who have an issue with cleaning up after wildlife. But as humans continue to encroach on wildlife habitat, they need to learn how to co-exist with waterfowl they share the landscape with.
The truth is, these days it’s easier than ever to institute clean-up programs so goose droppings on walkways or in parks can be disposed of. For instance, in the United States, manufacturer Tow and Farm offers different size pieces of equipment—its Tow and Collect series—that provide an efficient solution to collecting manure, goose feces, tree nuts and other debris.
Last month the City of Windsor in Ottawa, Canada approved $75,000 worth of equipment that will clean up goose droppings from riverfront paths. “Clearly we see all of council gets calls and we see that there is an increased issue over the last several years with respect to Canada geese and the droppings that they leave along our riverfront paths in particular,” Mayor Drew Wilkens told a local radio station.
Wilkens should be commended and Wisconsin should follow suit.
On a smaller scale, there are tools like the GoGo Stik, which isn’t just for people cleaning up after their dogs. It also works to clean up other piles that any wild critter leaves behind.
Oiling goose eggs, disrupting nests or roundups and slaughter send a disastrous precedent in allowing residents and lake associations to massacre wildlife at will, and that is unacceptable, especially when there are humane options at people’s fingertips with the click of a mouse and a Google search. In addition, rounding up and removing geese opens the door for even more geese to move in.
The best solution, in addition to cleaning up droppings, is habitat modification. Here are some ideas:
●Install vertical, sight limiting components—such as tall trees, shrubs or tall native wildflowers to disrupt unobstructed line of sight of Canada geese to help deter them from grazing
●Avoid Kentucky bluegrass as the primary component of lawns. If this species exists do not mow it shorter than 10 inches
●If sufficient space is available, you can limit Canada goose grazing to special tolerance areas—away from high human use areas—in other words a special Canada goose feeding site containing “lure crops” (food) such as shortly mowed grass plots that produce succulent shoots they like to graze on
Call or write LLBMD VP David Zimmerman and Village of Oconomowoc Lake President Joe Birbaum and tell them you oppose Canada goose slaughter and to implement these humane alternatives:
Lac La Belle Management District
P.O. Box 511
Oconomowoc, Wisconsin 53066
Village of Oconomowoc Lake
35328 W. Pabst Road
Oconomowoc, Wisconsin 53066