The City of Vancouver estimates there are 3,500 Canada geese in the city right now, and that number is growing. (Bruce Hogarth)

The City of Vancouver estimates there are 3,500 Canada geese in the city right now, and that number is growing. (Bruce Hogarth)

Help tame Vancouver’s Canada goose population by reporting nests: park officials

The city is asking residents to be on the lookout so staff can remove nests or addle eggs

They defecate on monuments and act aggressively when it’s time to mate – they’re wild Canada geese and the Vancouver park board says they’re getting out of hand.

There are currently more than 3,500 birds that have made a permanent home out of the coastal city’s parks, beaches and seawall, the board said in a statement March 3.

In an effort to reduce the city’s geese population, residents are being asked to report nests and refrain from feeding the birds as part of its new Geese Management Plan.

When notified of nesting – common on the tops of tall trees, roofs and balconies – wildlife park staff can replace laid eggs with addled ones that do not have reproductive capabilities.

The municipality said specialists indicate three-times the amount of addling needs to be done in order to affect the population at its current growth rate.

READ MORE: Massive geese crossing delays Abbotsford traffic (PHOTO)

Food from humans is also contributing to the booming population, said city environmental stewardship coordinator Dana McDonald.

It makes them “able to lay more than one clutch of eight eggs per season… In nature, without food from humans, this wouldn’t happen.” she said.

Goose droppings – which are large due to geese’s inefficient digestive systems – also pose a risk to park visitors and inhabitants.

“I know two people who were bitten and of at least three dogs that got giardia from eating goose poop,” said Susan Lipsett, who lives near Granville Island.

“Wedding venues in parks and gardens struggle with keeping the areas clean of goose droppings, as do water parks,” said the park board.

Report nesting online at vancouver.ca or by emailing geese@vancouver.ca.

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sarah.grochowski@bpdigital.ca

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