To Kill Its Horrid Scheme to Hammer Geese
New York-The town of Scarsdale, NY announced it's hiring USDA agents next summer to extinguish the few Canada geese who reside at the pond near Scarsdale's library, and Friends of Animals, an animal advocacy group founded in 1957, is intervening to defend the native geese.
Edita Birnkrant, NY Director of Friends of Animals says, "Canada geese, a bird native to North America, should live free of harassment and harm in Scarsdale, and throughout its range."
Village Manager Alfred A. Gatta's complaints about goose droppings are illogical, Friends of Animals says, as Gatta could easily implement a proven plan to remove fecal matter if it's accumulating in public areas. Human litter is picked up, the group says, and residents pick up after their dogs. "What's needed is an attitude adjustment," Birnkrant asserts. "Not a bloody round up and shooting project."
Machines that quickly clean up goose droppings on grass are available for parks and beaches, and are an easy, long-term solution for city officials to utilize, Birnkrant advises. "Geese pose no health threats-officials must make it a policy to clean up waste matter, which hasn't been done. Posting signs and enforcing no-feeding and littering rules are also sensible steps.
Goose roundups are monstrous, Friends of Animals reports. USDA agents typically enter the pond area during early morning, roughly separating goslings from parents, and then stuff the bound, panicked geese and babies into crates. Next, the geese are gassed or shot to death. Does Gatta imagine such immorality is preferable to cleaning the grass, Friends of Animals asks?
Removing the geese from the pond area will create a vacuum that will be filled as more geese are drawn back to the landscape, unless changes are made. Is Gatta prepared to spend tax funds each year to kill wildlife instead of implementing the effective, sound strategies Friends of Animals endorses?
Geese are attracted to areas with short, mowed grass with open sight lines as safe nesting areas. Growing grass longer in areas, planting native shrubs and trees to block sight lines (geese like to watch for predators), will deter geese from ponds, shores and parkland -- reducing the time they spend in any one spot.
Friends of Animals produces a Canada Goose Habitat Modification Manual detailing this process, and a copy is on the way to Village Manager Gatta.
Harassing, chasing and terrorizing geese from the pond area won't work. "Habitat and landscape modification are the only environmentally sound and long-term ways to deter geese from areas where they are seen as problematic, and that's clearly what's needed in Scarsdale. Co-existence with geese and other wildlife is required as a part of civilized suburban living," Birnkrant says.
WHAT YOU CAN DO
Please contact Village Manager Alfred A. Gatta and urge him to let the geese live and institute responsible policies that promote respect and tolerance of wildlife.
Village Manager Alfred A. Gatta