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Patience, tolerance needed when dealing with nesting geese, Guelph Humane Society says

Click to play video: 'Canada geese back in Edmonton: how to deter them from nesting on your property' Canada geese back in Edmonton: how to deter them from nesting on your property
Canada geese have started making an appearance in Edmonton over the past week. This month is a critical time for them as they start scouting out nesting sites – Mar 7, 2021

The Guelph Humane Society is reminding residents to be mindful of nesting Canada geese over the next three to four weeks because they can be very aggressive while protecting their eggs and babies.

The organization says while some nests are in odd or inconvenient places, geese pick their nesting locations with specific intentions.

Read more: The rise of Canada geese — How the birds bounced back from near extinction

“We often get calls from concerned people, worried about nests in parking lots or other odd locations,” said Lisa Veit, associate director of the humane society.

“But in fact, parking lots would make sense to geese for nesting. Geese look for flat, open spaces to nest with very little to no vegetation so that they can have a view of potential predators all around them.”

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While the humane society is asking for residents to tolerate their behaviour, it also noted that the community will legally have to put up with nesting geese as they are protected under the Migratory Bird Convention Act.

That means it is illegal to harass geese or harm their nest and it limits what animal services officers can do when it comes to nests on private property.

Click to play video: 'Family of geese with more than 20 goslings take over Stanley Park road' Family of geese with more than 20 goslings take over Stanley Park road
Family of geese with more than 20 goslings take over Stanley Park road – May 12, 2020

“This is a critical time for geese. Try to avoid them during their nesting season,” Veit said.

“If they nest near a busy building entrance, use an alternate entrance. Put up a sign telling people to avoid the entrance. We can change our habits for just a few weeks, and in less than a month the nest will be abandoned and they’ll move on with their young.”

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Read more: Leave nesting geese alone, says Manitoba wildlife rehab group

Drivers are also being reminded to watch out for geese on the road, with the humane society saying there have been a number of geese fatally struck by vehicles in the last week.

While animal services cannot touch or remove a nest, the humane society would like residents to call 519-824-3091 if a goose is sick, injured or in danger.

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