Mute Swans As Canada Goose Control

Hansel 768x1024 Mute Swans As Canada Goose Control

Canadian Geese are a nuisance across much of North America, where flocks of several hundred at a time may take up residence in public space and create major waste problems.  While the Canada Goose is a welcome native species in North America, they have been naturalizing in parts of Europe where they are not native. In the United States where they have been protected for decades their numbers have boomed enormously, and can cause problems for businesses that rely on large areas of open turf as part of their business model.  From golf courses, to retirement communities, Canadian Geese can cause major problems if their numbers are not modified, and controlled, and the pound of poop per day that they produce can be a public health hazard.

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Swans In Winter

img 0565 Swans In Winter

Winter weather is heading up the East Coast today, and so like many of those in the Landscaping and Property Management field of work, I am heading in to work to wait out the storm, and make sure that the roads and sidewalks in the area are clear for foot and road traffic throughout the day.

There is a quiet beauty, that always preceeds a big snow storm, so I’m taking the time to enjoy a little of that at the lake by the office, and bringing “Federico and Maria Therese,” two of my Mute Swans, a quick handout to eat before the rest of their food sources get buried in the snow.  Mute Swans always look regal, but in the winter weather they look especially beautiful, although I’d imagine in a few hours they will be difficult to see once the snow starts getting underway.

img 0567 Swans In Winter

How To: Keep Geese Off Your Waterfront Property or Pond

rope fence 300x214 How To: Keep Geese Off Your Waterfront Property or PondIn my area in particular, Canadian Geese are a large seasonal problem.  With each goose producing a pound of poop a day, they can quickly wear out their welcome, and your lawn! I’ve seen several suggestions online, as to how to control a goose population, including swan decoys, lawn treatments, and planting options, but I want to share with you an idea that is cheaper, and that will produce far more consistent results!  I manage several large community ponds, mowed and natural. I have tried versions of many things to humanely reduce and control the  goose population,  but for the homeowner who wants to discourage water birds in general from landing on your yard and grazing there, here is a quick and cheap way to keep waterfowl out, without using chemicals, or repellents, and without planting shrubs that will distort your water view.

What to Do: Measure the perimeter around the body of water that borders your property, preferably 2-3 feet from the water line. Divide the perimeter number by five. This is the number of posts you will need to buy. The second calculation you need with the original perimeter number is for the length of rope you will need. To get this number, multiply the perimeter number by 2.

What to Buy:

  • Purchase 3-4 foot stakes, or posts (metal, wood, bamboo, or pier pilings, depending on the look you want to achieve).
  • Purchase commercial-grade rope, of white, or yellow color.  The thickness of the rope doesn’t matter, thin rope will work just as well.

How To Build Your Goose Fence:

  • Place the stakes you purchased at five foot intervals, approximately 2-3 feet from the water line, in a row, hugging the shore line.
  • Tap these stakes into the ground ideally leaving 30 inches to 3 and a half feet above the ground (depending on the height of the stake you purchased).  You do not need a tall fence to keep geese, or other water birds away.
  • Tie the rope from post to post, leaving a generous swag bowing down in between each post (this is the key to making this fence work).  The rope must not touch the grass line, and should be about one foot off the ground at it’s lowest point.

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