How Geese Release Came to Be…

All across the world the sound of spring is synonymous with the arrival of Canadian Geese, who after flying thousands of miles along ridges and roadways are finally “home”. Unfortunately the welcome they receive isn’t always a friendly one. Instead they are often shot at, separated from their young, and referred to as “hostile, aggressive, and vicious”. The goal simply to get rid of geese.

A few years ago I received a call from one unwilling spectator as she observed several men not  50 feet from where she and her dogs were hiding — one, two, three, four, five… six, seven, eight geese — bullet shells raining through the trees, carcasses thrown like trash — a live goose struggling, wings outstretched, forced into a black trash bag. The man in charge laughed as he flung the dead and dying geese into the back of his truck.

It is well documented that traumatic events can alter behavior in humans, but in this case, it was the dogs who were seriously affected. Two of the eight suffered post-traumatic stress. Fireworks, thunder, loud noises, and  gunshots brought on  fits of anxiety and fear. Soon after one dog  jumped through the screen of a second story window, while the strongest suffered a seizure with complications that took his life within the week. He was not yet 6 years old.

The question is not whether the geese should or should not inhabit “private” waterways – rather how to move them along by way of humane Canadian Geese Management.

– Chord –

August 27, 2003 – August 3, 2009