Killing the Babies is Cruel


That is what some communities do to control the deer and Canada Geese populations.

Yes the geese make a messy problem, but killing their offspring amounts to animal cruelty. It is sad when wildlife has fewer places to raise families and it keeps getting smaller with each passing year. With geese, it is the excrement problem as the goose droppings anger golfers and town residents.


At the local airports, the geese became desensitized to air cannons used to scare them away and they had to hire a wildlife specialist at the Buffalo Niagara Airport to control geese and groundhogs. I am not sure what the specialist does for control though.


Solar-powered strobes were used locally as well in some places. Even one community put a fake alligator head in Ellicott Creek to scare the “interlopers”. One town conducted programs that “disrupt” nests or even oil eggs to prevent them from hatching so as to cut down on the goose population. Another uses border collies to chase geese. It really is a terrible life for the geese.


Some places shooting them is allowed during hunting season. Even our local nature preserves are ridding the parks of geese. Is that not what preserves are for, a safe environment for wildlife? So what a boater or duck hunter steps in the green excrement. I bet if the geese laid golden eggs the sportsman would not be so retaliatory to the geese.


When they have babies they will do anything to defend them and become very aggressive. Wouldn’t you?

Not only is shooting them cruel, unlikely it’s going to work. The remaining geese will breed more to produce more goslings. That’s what nature put them here to do. The number of the geese is not so much the problem as development has caused encroached on the land they have been using for generations. The problem is us and our goose attracting development, not the geese. There are too many of us! It makes you wonder if the goose control tactics would work on people and how long they would put up with it?


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31 Responses to Killing the Babies is Cruel

  1. Girl Gone Expat says:

    Getting rid of these absolutely adorable goslings would just be impossible for me to do. Just look at them! Definitely a problem that we are taking over a lot of the areas and leaving little left for wildlife. Recipe for conflicts between humans and wildlife.

    • alesiablogs says:

      I agree with you wholeheartedly. Great post Donna..

    • donna213 says:

      I could not do it either. I can’t even bring myself to squash insects. I catch them and take them outside. I get amazed by people thinking us taking habitat daily has no affect on other living creatures. We push and push, soon we will have no where else to push further.

  2. aussiebirder says:

    That is so sad Donna, and is again the product of man’s selfish attempt to dominate without consideration for the needs of the cohabitants of earth’s space. This is a problem here also for many species and has meant extinction for many in past years since European habitation.

    • donna213 says:

      I can imagine it is far worse in Europe with the long history. Animal extinction is very likely a natural process that would occur without us, but humans far expidited species demise.

  3. David says:

    Sad story. Wonderful pictures.

  4. What you are writing is exactly how it is … Nature should be ruling itself and that is what these animals try to do. It is human who disturbes the proces.
    Anyhow, these baby goose are so cute and you made great pictures of them.

    • donna213 says:

      There is no doubt since our beginning we had a moral and sustainable choice to make. We could either live side by side harmoniously or seek to control and dominate things. “We” chose the later.

  5. Pfff this is so sad, I think we should let them be killed by natural predators, but no by guns 😥

    • donna213 says:

      I agree. I would not mind the forests having wolves and bears. I don’t have any problem with nature existing as intended. If we are nature, we are very contrary to what seems to be the grand scheme of things.

  6. ‘goose control tactics’ …what a ‘fancy’ name for killing!
    We have a saying here when someone is too daft to find a solution: “Head hurts: Chop head!” o_O

    • donna213 says:

      It is really a shame how many animals die each year because people think them a nuisance. I like the saying, it shows how limited and narrow-minded people can be.

  7. You say that wildlife has fewer places to raise families, which makes it sound as if people are expanding into areas where Canada geese have always lived and are squeezing the geese out. But according to the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, in the early 1900s, only a handful of Canada geese nested in the wild in New York State. In recent years, there has been an upswing in the number of local-nesting or resident flocks. We’re not encroaching on their territory; Canada geese are coming into our territory. Yes, they are drawn here by the way we develop land. It’s the same kind of situation we have with deer. Their numbers are exploding and they are settling down in areas where they haven’t lived before (or at least haven’t lived in a century) because humans are providing the perfect habitat for them. They have become a nuisance to humans, and no, I don’t know the best way to handle the situation.

    • donna213 says:

      So it makes no sense that the rate of population increase in humans affects available wildlife habitat and the animals prefer (or should) push us out? A statistic from 1900 has little bearing on what occurs today. Yes, these geese were likely less then in NYS, but there was far less development (and us) too. As far as them being in large preserves and parks, I would think that is where they belong in natural conditions, but being grass eaters, our golf courses are pretty inviting and so are the city public parks. We made these places of grass and water that draw the geese. Deer in urban areas is altogether different. Their forests are slowly disappearing and lack of natural predators for them (besides us) their numbers increase. We are responsible for the lack of bear, coyotes and wolves too. Did we not take their lands too? If you read current statistics, more and more wildlife is showing up in neighborhoods. Why do you think they are coming? Not to impinge on our territory, but because they have little choice. Animals migrate and move in corridors. We build and cut through these corridors. If you ask me, we are a great nuisance to wildlife.

      The solution has always been sustainable cities for humans. It would leave corridors enact and there would be less need for wildlife to “bother” us. I studied and did research in sustainable living extensibly in architecture school and in private practice under a mentor. I worked in Costa Rica for 5 months on a project to protect wildlife from development. In private practice, I worked on reclaiming native wetlands, not for us per say, but the plants and animals that live there.

      The sustainable city idea is to keep us and our activities to limited areas. Sprawling suburbs and abandoned vacant buildings are not limited area. Reuse, sustainable cities and conservation… not an answer? Why of course not in this disposable society. One day people will smarten up when it is too late. Bee decline only wakened the notion for a short time, the same as the gas shortage in the early 70’s. People are not ever going to learn until things are all gone that matter. I know writing on this before, you think people change. I think people only change when a movement comes along, then they slide right back into bad habits. More and more people everyday does nothing but hurt our environment further.

      • My point is that in the case of deer and geese, humans aren’t pushing the animals out of their territory. Humans haven’t have diminished their current habitat, giving them little choice about where they live.

        Deer and geese have decided to move near humans because the habitat we have created is perfect for them.

        If I read it correctly, you seem to be saying that we have deer in urban areas because their forests are slowly disappearing. That’s not factual. In the early 1900s (yes, this has bearing on our topic because I’m showing a trend), there were no deer in Western New York because there was so much farmland and few wooded areas. Now humans have created in our cities and suburbs the kind of habitat that deer love: some open spaces mixed with wooded areas. The number of deer is rising in urban and suburban areas, but is held in check in rural areas by a number of factors, including animal predators and hunting.

        Deer aren’t living in urban and suburban areas because sprawl has pushed humans into their territory. They’re living so close to humans because we have created a habitat that they love. They have chosen to move in with us because it’s a great habitat, and their numbers have increased greatly as a result.

        See more about geese here:

        In many cases, humans have encroached on the territory of wildlife, but that’s not the scenario that’s playing out with deer and geese.

        • donna213 says:

          While it is true that deer and geese find our urban and suburban areas safe and food plentiful, studies not acknowledging the fact that humans take more and more land for development each day seem problematic. I cannot accept that premise that deer and geese would not live in native habits if it was available to them. By what you state, it seems like we have domesticated them to where we live and they would not live anywhere else. It is a complicated problem and has many factors weighing in on why we have these problems.

  8. Another interesting part of this issue is the development of the non-migrating Canada Goose. Their numbers have increased dramatically in the last 10 years in the Chesapeake region, and don’t mix or mate with the leaner migrating birds. They will eventually evolve into a whole different species. Their year-long presence just makes the issue more acute. in our area they’ve opened up a hunting season for the nonmigrators to try to control population.

    • donna213 says:

      We too have non-migritory geese here that winter over. Last winter there was far fewer that I saw though, maybe because the winter was so harsh and they perished. I did not realize they don’t inter-mate, that is interesting. I don’t mind hunting where hunter does it as a real sport. Baiting them to blast multitudes of them is unfair hunting. They also stock ponds with wing-clipped geese to bring in flocks. People that hunt for food I admire. People that hunt just to kill I detest.

  9. eulalia says:

    I completelly agree with you Donna…
    We are too many…

    So sad we behave in that we way, but everyone wants to have its own child, almost nobody adopts kids and our ego does not help nature… who knows…

    It is better if our species disappear….

  10. Lyle Krahn says:

    Those little goslings are crazy cute. And yes nature is messy sometimes – live with it.

    • donna213 says:

      I agree. I am of the same mind, “just live with it.” I don’t know where and when we decided we had to control the lives of other creatures in this manner. I did a post on GWGT that really makes me shake my head what science does to other creatures. Planned Parenthood for SQUIRRELS??? It seems every creature bugs us.

  11. eulalia says:

    Agree with both of you girls…

  12. milliontrees says:

    This is happening all over the country. Here is an investigative report about the killing of migratory birds authorized by US Fish & Wildlife Service:,%202015%20Weekly&mkt_tok=3RkMMJWWfF9wsRonva7BZKXonjHpfsX56O8lXqSg38431UFwdcjKPmjr1YIIScR0aPyQAgobGp5I5FEAQ7fYUaNst6IEUg%3D%3D. It says 1.6 million migratory birds were killed in the US from 2011 to 2013. 30,000 birds were killed during that period at the request of golf courses. This particular report focuses on native birds, but many more non-native animals, including birds. are killed for similar reasons, plus the mere fact that they aren’t native and are therefore considered “invasive.” If the public were more aware of this, I doubt that they would condone it. Unfortunately, most people are blissfully unaware of the killing being done legally.

    • donna213 says:

      I am so tired of reading of the bonehead decisions being made concerning habitat, wildlife and especially the destruction of working habitats. It is far too depressing. The number of birds that die each year from our house cats, high building and wind tower collisions, careless disposal of waste, poisoning because we want some plant gone, and the list is endless. Thanks for the link. I am not a golfer, but it is just too bad for those duffers to step in the wrong place. A little inconvenience is not worth the lives of birds and animals.

  13. lucindalines says:

    We could lose our guns or future hunting privileges for killing wildlife out of season in our state. We especially don’t get to kill young no matter what.

  14. Absolutely awful that we have to kill so many animals we feel are a ‘bother’ to us…

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