GUELPH, ON (April 19, 2021) – The Guelph Humane Society (GHS) is encouraging residents to be mindful of nesting geese over the next three to four weeks. Geese can be very aggressive when protecting their eggs, even more so than when they are protecting their babies.
“Geese incubate their eggs for about 25 days,” says Lisa Veit, Associate Director of GHS. “Once the eggs hatch, the parents and goslings leave the nest and seek out a body of water.”
Veit adds that while nests may seem like they are in odd places, geese pick their nesting locations with specific intentions.
“We often get calls from concerned people, worried about nests in parking lots, or other odd locations,” says Veit. “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.”
GHS recommends that people modify their behaviour while geese are nesting, to avoid any conflict. Geese are federally protected under the Migratory Bird Convention Act, so it is illegal to harass them or harm their nest. It also limits what GHS Animal Services Officers can do when it comes to nests on private property.
“Really, it comes down to patience and tolerance,” says Veit. “This is a critical time for geese. Try to avoid them during their nesting season. 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.”
Drivers are also being reminded to watch out for geese on roadways, as there have been a number of geese fatally struck by vehicles in the last week.
While GHS Animal Services Officers cannot touch or remove a nest, if you suspect a goose is sick, injured or in danger please call GHS at 519-824-3091.
About the Guelph Humane Society
The Guelph Humane Society advocates for all animals, and in particular those animals whose lives it can influence, through care, education, community support, protection, and leadership. Founded in 1893, the Guelph Humane Society provides care and shelter for approximately 3,000 homeless, stray, injured and abused animals each year in Guelph and Wellington County. GHS is a registered charitable, non-profit organization that does not receive government funding. Visit www.guelphhumane.ca to discover more.
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