About GeeseThe Canada goose is one of the most visible and well-known waterfowl. In some parts of the United States they are sometimes considered a nuisance species because of large numbers of geese congregating in city parks and golf courses. They are highly adaptable to human presence. Their honking can be heard before they are seen flying in V-formation, confirming the change of seasons.
Geese are attracted to areas with open water and large expanses of grass such as golf courses, parks and large apartment complexes. The problem with geese is most noticeable during winter when large numbers of migrating geese join year-round residents.
Human conflicts with geese sometimes arise because the changes that humans have made to a plot of land have attracted more geese than would naturally congregate there. In these cases, we can reduce human conflicts with geese simply by returning some of the natural features to the landscape.
Geese on Your PropertyWhat should I do if I have an excessive number of geese on my property?
- Do not feed geese. Feeding compounds the overpopulation problem and invites disease.
- Eliminate some of the large expanses of lawn by planting shrubs and other visual barriers. Geese dislike visual barriers between ponds and feeding areas. Geese prefer mowed grasses; so leaving a buffer area of tall grass and wildflowers can create a visual and physical barrier to resident geese.
- A permit is not required to scare, repel or herd geese to protect your property; as long as the birds are not killed or harmed. This can involve vigorously chasing geese with a broom or water hose. Repeated scaring can cause geese to relocate, but you must begin again if geese return. Scaring the geese is most effective when they first arrive at a location.
- During the fall and winter, blowing a loud whistle or an air horn may discourage these birds from staying on your property.
- There are several commercial repellents advertised to repel geese from lawns. These products must be applied according to label directions to be effective; they may need to be reapplied after rain, or twice weekly in dry conditions. Approved repellents are made from biodegradable, food-grade ingredients and are not toxic to birds, dogs, cats or humans.
- The Division of Wildlife helps control the population by rounding up molting geese in the summer and transporting them to states that hope to increase their goose population. In residential areas, homeowners' associations must request trapping. Contact the Division of Wildlife to have geese removed.
- Written permission from the Colorado Division of Wildlife is required before any interference with eggs or nests can begin. Contact the Division of Wildlife for more information about applying for a federal permit.