Expanded Goose Hunting Season: Yay or Nay?


Anderson Graphics

When honkers aren’t happy…

Ross Phalen, Contributor

Recently New York state hunting regulations have changed to allow greater hunting of the Canadian Geese population. Once on the endangered species list, Canadian geese populations have now grown to a point where there is now an overpopulation of these admittedly beautiful monsters. So the state extended the hunting season, with new rules allowing individual hunters to claim more geese per person. Some students here are excited about this and have stated that they look forward to hunting these long necked birds, but if you plan to participate be careful because geese can be crafty little buggers that can ruin your day, even if you’re not even hunting them.

Unless you are the one student (who shall remain nameless) that told me you don’t know what a goose is during your interview, you probably know the basic dangers of geese. They are hyperagrresive animals with a strong bite, and will pursue their target ruthlessly until that bite has reached its mark. Unless you are dealing with the extremely old geese who vacation on my great aunt’s farm, who move a grand total of about 5 feet per hour, a younger goose with likely be able to catch up with you to give you that painful bite, and with their long slender necks they will be able to do it from a distance.

Don’t just worry about their beaks though, for that is not their only weapon of mass destruction. Geese also have huge wings, and will gladly give you a jolly old smacking. With an adult Canadian goose having a wingspan of 4 to 6 feet, that slap will likely cover a lot more area on your skin than our pathetic human slaps will, and don’t think that it would just be your legs. These are birds we’re talking about, they can fly. It is likely that the goose will be flying directly at your face, wings flapping, ready to give you a real  whipping.  And it’s not likely there would just be ONE of them after you, but more like…ten? twenty? 

Even when they are not attacking people (or harassing your pets), geese leave an awful mess on people’s yards, sidewalks, and the roofs of their cars. Their waste is particularly nasty and large

So maybe it’s a good idea to reduce their population a bit? Personally I have a truce with the geese that visit the farm. But I know some of you might think they are a nuisance, or tasty, or both? Let us know in the comments.