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09 Mar

We have all probably played or have seen children play the game of “Duck, duck, goose” where, when you get tapped on your head, you jump up and chase the ‘tapper’ around a circle of other children. I never did understand the naming of that game. On the other hand, I’m certain everyone knows what it means to ‘Get Goosed’, but I’m providing you a definition here from  “To poke, prod or pinch a person on the behind”.

Given that information, be mindful of nesting geese this time of year because they are very protective and will most likely chase you away with raucous honking, harsh hissing and a furious flapping of wings with the intent of ‘goosing’ you if you get too close to their nest.  Most times they build their nest around lakes, ponds, retention ponds and other bodies of water but I have also seen them on private property, in mall parking lots, on playgrounds, parks and golf courses.

The problem these days is many geese no longer migrate and the goose population is increasing in alarming numbers.  It is their harmful waste they leave behind that I decided to inform you about today. 

Did you know that?

  • A goose will eat three pounds of grass each day and prefer your short, mowed grass
  • An adult goose will drop two pounds of fecal matter on your lawn and pathways daily
  • While eating, a goose will relieve itself every six to eight minutes
  • Goose droppings speed deterioration of lawns, cars, benches, and buildings
  • Goose fecal matter has been linked to the spread of diseases and bacterial infections
  • Population growth of geese ranges from 10 – 17 percent annually
  • There are more than 7,500 airplane bird strikes on an annual basis as reported by the U.S. Civil Aviation industry, costing millions of dollars in downtime and repairs
  • The increasing growth of weeds in bodies of water can be linked to goose dropping ‘fertilizer’ runoff

I have in mind at least a few more blogs to write over the next couple of weeks  concerning this topic.  They will provide ideas for maintaining habitat on and around your property that deters geese from nesting there.    April 24 – May 1, 2016 has been proclaimed by the National Association of Conservation District (NACD) as Stewardship Week.  According to former NACD President Steve Robinson, “Each of us can make a difference by developing habitat areas in our own backyards, our schools and in our communities”.  

Let’s all pull together and ‘Be Good Stewards’ by striving for and maintaining ‘Healthy Habitats”, even for the geese!

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Gramma Golden

Gramma Golden