Park geese euthanized to control population

July 23, 2013

By Christina Corrales-Toy

Lake Sammamish State Park visitors will likely notice significantly fewer geese, and as a result fewer geese feces, the next time they visit the park.

Public health concerns over the park’s growing population of geese led state park officials to authorize the killing of about 90 birds, said Virginia Painter, spokeswoman for Washington State Parks.

In the spring, the park had about 300 geese, threatening an overbalance of one species, which could be harmful to both people and the area’s ecology, Painter said.

“In the case of Canada geese, their feces contain a bunch of disease-causing organisms,” she said. “Those organisms are probably in the water and on the beach all over the place anyway, but when you get an overbalance, that’s when people can really get sick from it.”

Goose feces could be carriers of the parasite giardia, which causes a gastrointestinal infection, as well as bacteria such as E. coli and salmonella.

“Exposure to those things on the beach can be dangerous in swimming areas, especially for older people and young children,” Lake Sammamish State Park Manager Rich Benson said.

Animal advocates create petition

Seattle-based nonprofit Action for Animals has started a petition in response to the geese deaths at Lake Sammamish State Park

The online petition implores state officials “to stop the endless cycle of killing and to come up with a focused, well thought out comprehensive plan, which uses humane alternatives.”

It goes on to add that the Lake Sammamish State Park killings show that the geese at all state parks are in danger.

The petition is addressed to Rich Benson, Lake Sammamish State Park manager; Andrew Fielding, Washington State Parks resource steward; and Don Hoch, Washington State Parks director.

Action for Animals works to educate the public about the humane treatment of animals in positive ways. The organization hopes to gather about 1,000 signatures.

Learn more about Action for Animals at www.afa-online.org, and read the petition at http://chn.ge/1aNNxaC.

The Humane Society of the United States would dismiss those concerns, though, saying on its website that studies do not show that goose feces pose any special health threat. The organization does, however, acknowledge that people should generally avoid contact with animal feces.

Canada geese are federally protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918, so when it was decided that euthanasia was the best form of action, the U.S. Department of Agriculture and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service stepped in to carry out the request. The cost to the state, Painter said, was about $1,200.

The federal agencies employed a goose roundup, whereby they gather the geese in an enclosure during a summer period when the birds molt their flight feathers, making them unable to fly, said Ken Gruver, assistant state director for USDA Wildlife Services.

The birds are then placed into a chamber on a truck, and carbon dioxide is released, killing the geese almost instantaneously in a process that is approved by the American Veterinary Medical Association, Gruver said.

The Lake Sammamish State Park geese remains were taken to a landfill, Gruver said.

The way Klahanie resident Diane Weinstein sees it, though, the deaths are only a temporary solution for a problem that could be solved through more humane methods.

Benson noted that just days after the 90 or so birds were killed, several more geese appeared at the park, perhaps venturing from across the lake someplace, he said.

“For whatever reason, it seems when dealing with wildlife, the only solution that gets implemented is to kill it,” Weinstein said.

Weinstein, who volunteered with a Seattle group committed to stopping the practice of geese killing more than a decade ago, suggested changing the habitat to keep geese away.

Geese are attracted to large areas of mowed grass, she said, and prefer open sightlines. Reducing the grass area and planting tall vegetation are both preferred alternatives to killing geese, according to the Humane Society of the United States website.

Cleaning goose feces should also be a part of regular park maintenance, Weinstein said.

“There are alternatives,” she said. “You can even have volunteers clean up the beaches and the grassy area.”

The overabundance of geese has been a problem for local parks for about 30 years, Painter said, and during that time, the state has tried a multitude of alternatives to limit their presence.

“Nobody really likes the idea of euthanizing the geese,” Painter said. “There is just no good solution.”

In parks across the state, workers have attempted a technique called egg addling, which works to limit a flock’s growth by putting a hole in an egg so it doesn’t hatch. The Humane Society of the United States suggests egg addling to help control a goose population, but notes that only eggs incubated less than two weeks can be humanely addled.

The state has also tried cardboard cutouts to scare geese away, and have put screens along the edges of lakes to discourage geese access to the water. The screen method would not work at Lake Sammamish State Park, though, Painter said, because of the vast shoreline.

The state has also tried to use education, encouraging visitors not to feed the geese, which makes the park an even more desirable habitat for the birds.

Ultimately, those methods are not very effective, Painter said, leading the state to explore euthanasia.

“The general feeling is if the geese numbers start to get out of control, there really aren’t many options,” she said. “We’ve had to do it in other places just over the years. It’s not like it’s happening all over the state, but it’s kind of a constant issue that land management agencies have to deal with.”

Painter said that the state has received complaints from park visitors across the state, including Lake Sammamish State Park, about the goose feces, and at some point, people just stop going to such places.

Friends of Lake Sammamish State Park board member David Kappler said he felt it was time to do something about the geese, whose feces left the park undesirable for visitors.

“I think it had to happen,” he said. “The goose poop was everywhere. It made the park pretty unfriendly for families.”

Issaquah resident Steve Balkman agreed with that sentiment, saying in a letter to The Press that local and state officials should control the geese not only in the park, but in the city, too.

“For the 24 years I have lived in Issaquah, the geese have been a constant problem,” he said. “The geese and their poop have robbed the people from being able to fully utilize the lake park for decades.”

Weinstein argued that the park was large enough for both humans and geese.

“There are two beaches,” she said. “Can’t we share a little bit with the geese?”

 

 

 

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Comments

22 Responses to “Park geese euthanized to control population”

  1. MBBklyn on July 23rd, 2013 7:53 pm

    Wow, what a terrible message you are sending to the children of your community. In light of all the recent and continued violence in or world, it is too bad Washington State Parks would rather be known for their killing fields than for their compassion.

    These birds do NOT die instantaneously.
    After the stress of rounding them up on both parents and goslings during their flightless stage, along with their they are tossed into turkey crates, piled high upon each other. The parents are separated from their offspring and given that these birds are incredibly devoted parents, the stress of this alone is inhumane. They are then trucked to a gassing chamber where they are gassed and for waterfowl this is especially cruel given that they are able to hold their breath for an extended length of time, increasing their suffering as they battle for the last breath of air in the gas chamber. Witnesses have actually heard the geese thumping against the walls of these chambers.

    Truly horrific.  Communities who take part of such a violent assault on wildlife should be ashamed of themselves!   and with taxpayer money!

    The continued slaughter of our wildlife with our tax dollars must end.

  2. Mt. Hood Community College project taps students to seed native forest floor | Smart blog on time management on July 23rd, 2013 9:54 pm

    [...] Park geese euthanized to control population Lake Sammamish State Park visitors can probably see greatly fewer geese, plus because a happen fewer geese feces, the upcoming time they see the park. Public wellness concerns over the park's growing … Ultimately, those techniques are not pretty efficient … Read more about Issaquah Press [...]

  3. PattyA on July 24th, 2013 9:43 am

    A few things of note in this fairly in depth piece:

    First, the repeated use of “euthanize” to refer to goose gassing. This is one of the biggest falsehoods perpetrated by media and USDA as it is pure euphemism meant to pacify the public that the geese died “humanely.” They did not. Nor, were the geese terminally ill that they needed “merciful” release from suffering. This was wildlife massacre for human convenience, pure and simple.

    Article claims the geese die “immediately.” Not so, even according to USDA spokesperson who said in conversation two years ago, that geese “take from five minutes up to an hour to die in gas chambers.” (Average about 15 minutes accordring to one USDA official.) Geese are birds who can fly thousands of miles high in the air, requiring little oxygen. They obviously can hold breaths far longer than mammals and therefore take longer to die by gassing (a hideous death for any creature or human.)

    The article says nothing about this location either using harassment with Border Collies or egg addling to control goose population. (Methods that actually work.) They chose killing over responsibility.

    Finally, about the “complaining letter” published in a newspaper.

    Did anyone stop to consider that many people like geese and appreciate wildlife in their parks?

    Do we now have to write letters to newspapers to express appreciation for something before officials order massacres based on the one “squeaky wheel” who most likely hates everything, including cats, dogs and perhaps even children?

    Sad and pathetic state of affairs our country is coming to.

  4. Vos Normandy on July 24th, 2013 11:32 am

    It appears that park officials tried many other methods before resorting to euthanization and I applaud them for reclaiming the parks. The amount of feces left by these birds is disgusting, inhibits the park’s use, discourages visitors and results in higher park fees/taxes to maintain what should be a wonderful place to spend a Northwest summer day.

    “Reducing the grass area and planting tall vegetation” doesn’t make for much of a park now does it?

    Border Collies aren’t as successful as you claim. They can be expensive to train and maintain and, since the geese need to be able to fly away, can’t be used during the molting season. Guess what else geese do when they’re frightened? That’s right, drop even more poop…

    Egg addling (coating the eggs or drilling holes in them) can only be done in a short window and results in rotting eggs all over the park. Not a nice smell and will attract predators, water rats, etc. Let alone finding all the nests.

    The geese are pretty and we all like seeing them – but when their overpopulation becomes a problem and inhibits use of the park… I feel park officials acted appropriately. Well, they could have built a giant robot that shoots gouts of flame but I’m sure someone would find fault in that too.

  5. Rebecca Duffeck on July 24th, 2013 12:16 pm

    I just can’t believe what some uninformed people will say to justify the slaughtering of these poor innocent creatures that are just trying to live. I for one consider it an honor that these majestic geese even want to live among us with their beauty and grace.
    According to the center for disease control, Washington DC April, 2005, Canada Geese DO NOT TRANSMIT DISEASES TO HUMANS. People are always claiming that Canada Goose droppings are harmful to humans; This is so destroying to the geese and so untrue. It is cruel and hypocritical, because goose droppings are small and dissolve when it rains. It is purely digested grass which is hardly a health danger compared to the disgusting garbage left all around by humans. Our rivers and drinking water is contaminated with human waste products – states Robin McClary, State and Federal Licensed Waterfowl Rehabilitator.
    Any time cruelty is involved toward our wildlife, we lose a little more of our humanity if we don’t deal with it and learn that all lifeforms are inner-connected, we run the risk of destroying that delicate balance between man and nature.

  6. PattyA on July 24th, 2013 1:01 pm

    @ Vos Normandy: “Appears” is often illusion as it is in the example you used.

    I live near Central Park in NYC which, for years has successfully managed its goose population WITHOUT resorting to inexcusable wildlife carnage.

    CP is an 843 acre park that maintains a population of 40 resident geese through the summer molt.

    How do they do that?

    “Geese Police” (Border Collie Harassment and egg addling company). The geese are hazed in the spring (when seeking to nest) and their eggs are oiled.

    And no, the eggs don’t “smell” or create some ecological problem. The goose continues to sit on eggs, the eggs fail to hatch and when realizing this, the parent geese leave. The infertile eggs quickly disappear a day or two later. (Raccoons might grab them.)

    Your response is filled with the kind of propaganda one might expect as rationalization for goose massacres.

    Why don’t you visit Central Park sometime and see how real, effective and HUMANE goose management actually works instead of championing barbaric massacres that put this Washington park in a Wildlife Hall of Shame and Infamy?

    What nonsense.

  7. Don Gulliford on July 24th, 2013 2:19 pm

    This is beyond disgusting.

  8. MarionA on July 24th, 2013 4:04 pm

    Interesting….not far across the 49th parallel the Okanagan Valley of BC had a humane goose management plan. Rampant and unnecessary killing is one of the major differences between Canada and the USA. I live in Vancouver BC and often have visited friends and relatives in Washington….I will never cross the border into this disgusting state again and am advising all my friends on social media sites to avoid your sick parks/killing fields. There is NO EXCUSE for this.

    MEDIA RELEASE: Egg Addling Controls Goose Population

    “In a continued effort to control the Canada Goose population in the Okanagan Valley, the Okanagan Valley Goose Management Program is about to begin its annual egg addling program. Over the PAST SIX YEARS, this program has prevented the exponential increase of the non-migratory resident goose population that inhabits the valley all year long………Since the program began in 2007, approximately 7,700 EGGS HAVE BEEN PREVENTED FROM HATCHING THROUGH THIS MINIMALLY INVASIVE APPROACH…. ….In order for the program to succeed, new nests need to be identified. The PUBLIC IS ASKED TO REPORT lone geese, pairs of geese or nest locations on private or public land.”

    http://www.okanagangooseplan.com/?p=270

    In addition to ground surveys, aerial surveys were conducted in 2007 and 2011 to estimate the number of geese residing in the Okanagan Valley and to determine what proportion of the population were hatched that year. THE CANADA GOOSE POPULATION APPEARS TO HAVE STABILIZED THROUGHOUT THE VALLEY.

    http://www.okanagangooseplan.com/?cat=6

    GOOSE STRATEGY AND ACTION PLAN.

    http://www.okanagangooseplan.com/files/OVGMP_Strategy_Action%20Plan_2006.pdf

    The Okanagan Valley in BC is a major tourist and recreational area. The Okanagan Lake is 70 miles long. Other major industries include orchards and vineyards. The valley is as big as the state of NJ and they have a humane egg addling program which has successfully stabilized their permanent resident Canada goose population.

    And Trip Advisor just named Stanley Park in Vancouver, BC as the world’s best park…and guess what? WE HAVE CANADA GEESE IN STANLEY PARK!! You people down there are insane.

    https://www.facebook.com/marion.ambler/media_set?set=a.454679931219918.99380.100000337454953&type=3

  9. MarionA on July 24th, 2013 4:09 pm

    AND GEESE ARE NOT A HEALTH HAZARD….cut the utter BS.

    Environment Canada and Canadian Wildlife Services said this: Do goose droppings pose a danger to human health?

    EC-CWS worked with wildlife disease experts at the Canadian Cooperative Wildlife Health Centre to review the diseases carried by and affecting Canada Geese, and their implications for human and animal health. THERE IS NO direct evidence that goose droppings pose a danger to human health, and the review concluded that there is not enough data to conduct a meaningful risk assessment. They found large gaps in most of the important factors which are key to determining risk; most importantly, there is virtually no information on the frequency or probability with which pathogens are transmitted from geese to people or livestock. The report is available on CCWHC’s website.

    http://www.ec.gc.ca/mbc-com/default.asp?lang=En&n=98A918B1-1

    According to state and university public health experts including the New Jersey Department of Health, goose feces are fairly innocuous, posing little or no health risks to humans.

    Dr. Timothy Ford, professor at the Harvard School of Public Health and author of “Microbiological Safety of Drinking Water: United States and Global Perspective 1999,” states: “Numbers of Cryptosporidium oocysts associated with Canada geese and waterfowl in general are likely to be minimal, unimportant relative to the potential for oocysts shed from other forms of wildlife and humans. IN MY MIND THERE IS NO POSSIBILITY THAT THE CANADA GOOSE WILL EVER BE A MAJOR ROUTE OF INFECTION. TO SUGGEST OTHERWISE IS UTTERLY LUDICROUS AND YOU CAN QUOTE ME

    And David S. Adam, Coordinator of Health Projects, Vector Control, Infectious and Zoonotic Disease Program for the State of New Jersey Department of Health, writes: “Giardia lamblia, as well as Cryptosporidium, is most commonly transmitted to humans by person-to-person fecal-oral contamination or by water fecally contaminated by humans or other mammals. Infection is usually asymptomatic with children infected more frequently than adults, often in the day-care setting. In summary, the role of Canada geese in the transmission of Cryptospordium or Giardia to humans is not well established, BUT APPEARS TO BE SMALL COMPARED WITH OTHER MODES OF TRANSMISSION.”

    Mr. Adams adds that CANADA GEESE HAVE BEEN WRONGLY BLAMED FOR BEACH CLOSINGS: “A number of beach closings including several in New Jersey have been attributed to this cause [high fecal coliform counts attributed to Canada geese]. However, research on this subject (including surveillance conducted in New Jersey) has usually found VERY LOW LEVELS OF PATHOGENIC BACTERIA, such as Salmonella sp., in the feces of waterfowl NOT EXPOSED TO HUMAN SEWAGE EFFLUENT:

    Dr. Milton Friend, former director, Wildlife Research Center Water Fowl Disease U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, is adamant: “On occasion we have been wading in that stuff [feces], dead birds up to our elbows… THERE IS NOT A SINGLE DOCUMENTED CASE OF ANY OF US COMING DOWN WITH ANY KIND OF A DISEASE PROBLEMS AS A RESULT OF THE CANADA GOOSE…WE DO NOT HAVE A HUMAN HEALTH SITUATION, NOT IN THE URBAN GOOSE, NOT IN THE WILD GOOSE, and not in the captive geese that we have also worked with. We do have a lot of diseases out there that can affect people. MOST OF THEM COME FROM DIFFERENT PLACES AND DO NOT COME FROM THE CANADA GOOSE AND I’LL LEAVE YOU WITH THAT.”

    IF YOU ARE WORRIED ABOUT HEALTH HAZARDS….look up the environmental and health hazards related to 70 million DOGS.

    DOG POOP

    DOG WASTE IS CITED AS THE 3RD OR 4TH LARGEST CONTRIBUTOR OF BACTERIAL POLLUTION IN URBAN WATERSHEDS.

    The average dog produces approximately 3/4 pounds of poop every day. 1,000 dogs will produce 750 pounds of excrement a week.

    DOG FECES HAVE HIGHER PHOSPHOROUS CONCENTRATIONS THAN FOUND IN COW AND SWINE MANURE. PHOSPHORUS IS A NUTRIENT THAT NEGATIVELY IMPACTS WATER QUALITY AND PLANT SPECIES. NITROGEN, FOUND IN DOG URINE, ALSO CAUSES CONTAMINATED RUNOFF AND LEADS TO SERIOUS WATER QUALITY ISSUES.

    http://www.keepitcleanpartnership.org/pollution-prevention/scoop-the-poop/

    Look up diseases related to daycares, hospitals, swimming pools, hot tubs, water parks. NEVER AGAIN WILL I VISIT WASHINGTON and I will do my utmost to persuade everyone I know to avoid your disgusting lying state.

  10. MarionA on July 24th, 2013 4:16 pm

    Goose poop scooper gets trial run

    October 7, 2011
    By CHRIS KNIGHT – Senior Staff Writer (cknight@adirondackdailyenterprise.com) , Adirondack Daily Enterprise
    Save |

    SARANAC LAKE – The Saranac Lake Central School District’s new goose poop removal machine got a trial run Thursday afternoon on the high school’s practice football field………The last five years, the amount of time we’ve put into the geese, and the amount of money we’ve spent with gimmicks trying to do something, I think this will be cost effective compared to that,” he said.

    Daunais said the district plans to create compost using the collected goose feces.

    http://adirondackdailyenterprise.com/page/content.detail/id/527020/Goose-poop-scooper-gets-trial-run.html

    I CANNOT EXRESS MY UTTER DISGUST AT THE LIES TO JUSTIFY THIS KILLING AND THE LACK OF INTELLIGENCE IN SOLVING YOUR PERECEIVED GOOSE PROBLEMS. And you should also do SOME RESEARCH to find where these geese came from……artificial populations created by wildlife agencies and conservation groups like Audubon. Look up OPERATION MOTHER GOOSE.

    “Today is the 45th anniversary of an unusual experiment (this link takes you to a more detailed that article that I wrote about this for HistoryLink). On April 11, 1968, biologists working in cooperation with the Washington state Department of Game and the U.S. Bureau of Sport Fisheries and Wildlife collected 1,200 Canada goose eggs. Their goal was to use the eggs to build up the populations of these birds, which had been on a steady decline for years.

    They were successful, particularly so in the Puget Sound lowland, and they may be the source population for the thousands of Canada geese living year in the area now.

    http://geologywriter.com/blog/street-smart-naturalist-blog/operation-mother-goose/

    If there was any justice in this world the people behind these goose gassings would be charged and convicted.

    The Nature Sweep, purchased from a company of the same name in British Columbia, Canada, for $9,770, will be used to clean up goose feces from the district’s athletic fields.

  11. Kim on July 24th, 2013 5:05 pm

    There aren’t many options? Really? It’s called birth control, egg oiling. For 30 years if these lazy, misinformed people oiled goose eggs they would not have this issue. Simple.

  12. MBBklyn on July 25th, 2013 6:38 am

    I really wish the USDA and the media would stop panning this as EUTHANASIA.
    “Protected species” means nothing, especially when it comes to the governmental agencies who slaughter them. Seems they are “conveniently” protected.

    This is not “Euthanasia” as the USDA continually states-
    According to Merriam-Webster, the definition of Euthanasia is the following: : the act or practice of killing or permitting the death of hopelessly sick or injured individuals (as persons or domestic animals) in a relatively painless way for reasons of mercy.”

    Did these geese appear hopelessly sick? Are the killings being done for the sake of “mercy”?

    NO- Sadly they are killed for the sake of greed and convenience.

  13. bob burkle on July 25th, 2013 12:16 pm

    I apologize in advance for those that might be offended by the thought that these geese should be hunted and eaten rather than wasted by gassing them and throwing them in a landfill, but waterfowl hunting is a legal pursuit in Washington State (Canada too). Some modifications to the federal requirements of what constitutes a legal weapon, plus a little common sense, could accomodate hunting in urban areas where, for obvious reasons, conventional hunting methods could not be employed. Federal statues, which all states have to comply with for hunting of migratory waterfowl, require the use of a shotgun of 10 guage or smaller carrying no more than 3 non-toxic shot shells, obviously impractical to torch off in any park. If this rule could be instead changed to use of a net and/or net capture gun, and if parks that are afflicted with too many geese would open only for net hunting say from dawn to 8 AM, before most non-hunters would want to use the park, I imagine that there would be plenty of volunteers to help reduce the population at no cost to the taxpayer. Possible hunting methods would be chasing down and dip netting geese (especially aggressive geese) during their flightless stage, or setting up decoys the rest of the year and “shooting” decoyed birds with a CO2 powered gun that throws a net to entangle the goose at close range. These birds would then need to be dispatched of course, but every hunter has had to wring (break) the neck of a wounded bird, and knows how to do it quickly and humanely. The main reason parks in urban areas have become defacto wildlife refuges is because of lack of hunting, bring some net hunting pressure into these areas and see how quickly geese disperse to other habitats.

  14. GGriffin on July 25th, 2013 12:19 pm

    Thank you, Patty, for bringing up the deliberate misuse of the word “euthanasia.”

    –> It’s a manipulation of terms for the parks to use “euthanasia” to describe this killing and the killing method of these Canada Geese. I worked at a wildlife hospital where, in some instance, regulated CO2 was used very precisely for *certain* species — note the emphasis on certain! Small birds, for instance, respond very differently to respiratory and systemic issues involved with CO2, than do mammals or large birds like geese. At this facility, there were judicious, highly selective and strict medically supervised procedures to ensure that death was quick and painless for all wild animals who could not be saved. Larger animals were euthanized by injection, just as pets would be, which is the only humane option for other species.

    –> Saying that the American Veterinary Medical Association approves of this method is also inaccurate. The guidelines suggest *minimum* standards for treatment and euthanasia, and if you research the issue, you’ll find there’s much disagreement among practitioners about those minimum standards and their alleged “humaneness.”

    In no way, shape or form is what happened here humane. Using the term euthanasia which, translated from the ancient, means beautiful or peaceful death, is such an abomination of misrepresentation — designed to mislead members of the public who don’t have accurate information on this.

    –> Next, as others have mention, egg addling and other non-lethal means have been used in areas to keep goose populations balance. Of course, there’s never a mention of how we are destroying habitat for wildlife at unprecedented levels, leading to high concentrations of wild birds and animals in areas like this. Our habits, our development and our total disregard for wildlife is at the heart of almost every wildlife-human interaction issue.

    –> Third, anyone reading this article — please read Tom Knudson’s series in the Sacramento Bee from last year. He wrote a scathing and truthful three-part exposé of USDA Wildlife Services and their abusive and inhumane actions toward wild animals across the board. He continues to follow the progress of various measures against Wildlife Services and calls to action against their employees who’ve committed some unspeakably cruel acts toward wild animals.

    Washington State Parks, at bare minimum, should sever relations with Wildlife Services if they want to retain any appearance of humane treatment of wildlife. Cities like Davis, California already have, after understanding the wasteful and often awful methods perpetrated by this agency.

  15. Jenny on July 25th, 2013 8:12 pm

    The geese are not overpopulated, humans are overpopulated. I can’t believe we’re so arrogant to think the park BELONGS to us alone. This was geese habitat long before us, how about we learn to live with and respect wildlife instead of killing it. This is just disgusting.

  16. MarionA on July 26th, 2013 9:00 am

    bob burkle – you want more hunting opportunities in public parks? WHY? People enjoy urban wildlife and they can’t enjoy them if they know they are going to be killed by hunters. These are not wild geese…they are used to people. This would be esssentially a canned hunt, you could walk up to these innocent birds and blast them.

    I will also point out…these populations were deliberately created for hunters. Yes…you people and your government wildlife agencies and conservation groups like Audubon CREATED these goose populations. Now that you created the problem…you can keep your killing hands off them and let people enjoy them in urban parks. You get more than enough hunting opportunities in HUNTING SEASON. STAY OUT OF URBAN PARKS.

    We don’t have a problem with urban permanent resident geese in Vancouver, BC or the entire Okanagan Valley because we have humane egg addling to stabilize the population.

    Operation Mother Goose….one of the sources of Washington’s Canada geese.
    http://geologywriter.com/blog/street-smart-naturalist-blog/operation-mother-goose/

    MEDIA RELEASE: Egg Addling Controls Goose Population

    “In a continued effort to control the Canada Goose population in the Okanagan Valley, the Okanagan Valley Goose Management Program is about to begin its annual egg addling program. Over the PAST SIX YEARS, this program has prevented the exponential increase of the non-migratory resident goose population that inhabits the valley all year long………Since the program began in 2007, approximately 7,700 EGGS HAVE BEEN PREVENTED FROM HATCHING THROUGH THIS MINIMALLY INVASIVE APPROACH…. ….In order for the program to succeed, new nests need to be identified. The PUBLIC IS ASKED TO REPORT lone geese, pairs of geese or nest locations on private or public land.”

    http://www.okanagangooseplan.com/?p=270

    In addition to ground surveys, aerial surveys were conducted in 2007 and 2011 to estimate the number of geese residing in the Okanagan Valley and to determine what proportion of the population were hatched that year. THE CANADA GOOSE POPULATION APPEARS TO HAVE STABILIZED THROUGHOUT THE VALLEY.

    http://www.okanagangooseplan.com/?cat=6

    GOOSE STRATEGY AND ACTION PLAN.

    http://www.okanagangooseplan.com/files/OVGMP_Strategy_Action%20Plan_2006.pdf

    ECO TOURISM is already a large industry and it is growing…it is the humane communities that will get these tourists, not killing fields.

    STANLEY PARK..NAMED WORLD’S BEST PARK BY TRIP ADVISOR

    The world’s best park appears to have a lot of WILDLIFE.
    https://www.facebook.com/marion.ambler/media_set?set=a.454679931219918.99380.100000337454953&type=3

    It’s all about the birds in Israel – Israel is building more birding centers, a new conservation center, and an urban wetland in the heart of Tel Aviv to protect birds, and attract international bird-watchers.

    http://israel21c.org/environment/its-all-about-the-birds-in-israel/

    And Bob…hunting geese is legal in Canada…but in hunting season and not ‘canned hunts’ of tame birds in urban parks.

  17. Vos Normandy on July 26th, 2013 9:48 pm

    @ PattyA. Yes, I’ve enjoyed Central Park several times but, as you stated, they only have 40 geese in an 843 acre park. Lake Sammamish had 300 in a 500+ acre park – that’s 7.5 times the geese in roughly 60% of the space. That’s overpopulation – we should of invited Pet Hoarders to film a show there.

    Boarder collies would be great if they didn’t just disperse the flocks elsewhere, fouling all the other areas we try to enjoy. “Hello Marymoor, Hello Pine Lake, Hello Klahanie! Please make our problems yours!”

    Assuming you can find all the eggs, addling would maintain the current population levels, not reduce them. Since geese can live up to 20 years, that’s a LONG time before they’re brought down to the same enviable levels as Central Park.

    While I’m not a hunter, I support Bob and his responsible hunting suggestion. Other communities have been nice enough to even donate the meat to food shelters, but why not reward the hunters for their efforts and time?

    Despite all the links to unreliable research and news sources, these geese were a nuisance, fouled the park with their feces, and limited visitor’s enjoyment of the grounds. Park officials were right to bring their numbers to a more healthy and manageable level.

  18. Shelly on July 27th, 2013 3:26 pm

    I was deeply saddened by the article in the 7/24 Issaquah Press entitled: “Park geese euthanized to control population”. Sad for the geese, sad for the people who did it, sad for the people who asked for it, but mostly sad for the condition of the human race and the society we’ve become. Why is it that killing is still our response to competition? I can understand back when we had to kill to survive but that hasn’t been necessary for a long time. It wasn’t killing so we could take lands that belonged to other people like in the past. This was killing for recreation. Not the act of killing itself, like hunting, but so that families could enjoy a park without the inconvenience of staying clear of the animals droppings. The article did a good job of explaining other options that have been proposed. Why weren’t those options taken more seriously and with a long term solution in mind? This problem was created by humans interfering with nature through years and killing anything that got in between us and what we wanted to add to our possessions individually and collectively. Einstein said “We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them”. It’s time to take ‘killing’ out of the list of options. We can be better than that! We have to be – our survival in communion with all life on this planet depends on it!

    Thank you to the IP for making us aware of this, but ‘killed’ instead of ‘euthanized’ would have been more accurate. Euthanized means “to kill (a person or animal) painlessly, esp to relieve suffering from an incurable illness”. I take exception to the ‘painlessly’ in this instance and it was certainly not to relieve suffering.

  19. Common Sense on July 29th, 2013 10:12 pm

    It is truly ironic that on one hand those who post sympathy for the over populated geese are very likely NOT vegetarians, and are therefore responsible for a far more cruel form of death which many millions of cows, pigs, sheep, lamb, chickens experience each minute of each day. Dying due to CO2 exposure is the least painful way to go; many people have died from accidental CO poisoning by just falling asleep and have no idea what is going on.

    Apparently reading these posts, you can see that “Common Sense” does not exist, and it is a disease spreading through the population/media which will eventually destroy us all…but this is what the environmentalists want; the end of the human race. However, another top of the food chain will take over our place and perform the very same acts which those of you lacking “Common Sense” abhor.

    Good luck and enjoy your ride of lunacy.

  20. pamela dent on August 1st, 2013 8:59 pm

    I will not purchase another $30 park pass to walk my dogs. The geese were never a problem for me—-I was always more bothered by humans who can’t pick up their trash when plenty of containers are provided and the countless times I saw the same people NEVER picking up their dog droppings. If you ticketed these people in an 8 hour shift (and an additional shift), it would pay the wages of that person and still have money to fund egg addling to keep the population down rather than the entirely INHUMANE way of handling this. I have seen this every day during the hour I’m there. Were these the same people who “took care of the beavers” when work was done on the creek by the baseball fields a few years ago??—one dead on the road on Sammamish Parkway and another dead in the creek—what happened to the others? How do people sleep at night when they have tortured animals. Karma to you

  21. Linda Troup on August 4th, 2013 11:31 am

    Leaders set the tone and is why they should be carefully screened. Required eligibility criteria to satisfactory fulfill the role of Director and Assistant Director for the USDA Wildlife Services must include previously demonstrated COMPASSION, RESPECT and concern for wildlife welfare. Sadly, this has not been the case. Brutality will continue. The good ol boys network is focused on cheap, rash, savage, testosterone driven “solutions” devoid of public input. This was quite evident in the horrifically cruel goose murders and the recent aerial wolf massacre in eastern WA. The public needs to DEMAND change.

  22. GGriffin on August 5th, 2013 9:28 pm

    Common Sense,

    You obviously have a right to your perspective, but in terms of facts, you’re misleading others through inaccuracies and through your own misunderstanding for wildlife biology.

    CO2 is *not* a humane death for many types of animals. As one example, wildlife facilities who humanely euthanize for injuries, do not use CO2 on bats because of the duress it incurs. Ducks and geese show resistance to CO2 which means they need higher concentrations and longer exposures, which then results in suffering through asphyxiation. Death by injection, the most humane method, would not be considered by an agency like Wildlife Services. The worst part is that their propaganda serves to manipulate persons like yourself into believing these misrepresentations about their methods, intents and the outcomes for the animals.

    Second, many (including myself) who care about wildlife are, indeed, vegetarians because of the critical environmental damage done by industries such as livestock grazing. Beyond that, it’s not an either or proposition. You just look foolish and you undermine your own credibility, tossing out those types of assumptions without any sort of background.

    Third, it appears you haven’t studied biology since the era when ecological coexistence was described as a “food chain” with an anthropogenic hierarchy, rather than the complex food web that it is. Even Darwinian ideas of evolution and survival have been hijacked by this mentality to suggest he believed, at all costs, in survival of the fittest. Not true. Because your view of nature rests on these archaic ideas, it makes sense that you would also ascribe to the idea of human dominion over other species. I would suggest moving your ideology forward into the 21st century.

    Lastly, if you bothered to be involved in or read environmental and scientific journals, you’d understand that at heart, the environmental movement gives human sustainability very high priority. How ludicrous to suggest that preserving and protecting our natural resources for future generations is somehow an anti-human stance.

    So, really — who’s lacking common sense here?

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