Gone, goose: LaSalle borough officials turn to man's best friend to clear out pesky, pooping birds
MONTREAL -- In LaSalle’s Parc des Rapides, Canada Geese waddle down a paved path alongside joggers. The waterfront park runs alongside the St-Lawrence River and a bird sanctuary.
While more often than not, the birds and humans get along, the borough wants to clear the geese out.
“Canada Geese unfortunately produce a large number of feces and it really is a toxic hazard,” said Nathalie Hadida from LaSalle’s Registry and Citizen Relations department.
The borough is paying a contractor $50 000 a year to use herding dogs and remote controlled toys to scare the geese away.
Jean-Simon Duchesne is one of the wildlife technicians. He and his dog, a 10-year-old border collie named Lili, patrol up and down the park chasing the birds.
The goal is to keep the fowl right alongside the riverbanks where they nest. “We have noticed more and more Canada Geese couples nesting the area. Just this past year there were nine nests,” said Héritage Laurentien biologist Jacques Duquette.
The borough cannot harm the geese due to the Migratory Bird Act. It’s choosing this method to discourage them from walking and dropping feces in the grass. It’s also encouraging humans not to feed the birds, which makes them used to being close to humans.
“We have to cohabitate with them,” said Duchesne. “(Chasing them) is the only way that doesn't require an exterminator. It's the most peaceful way.”