Canadian geese on campus and how it affects students
“I really don’t like them here,” Yan Kobylyatskiy, 22 year old sophomore from Moscow stated referring to SC4’s feathered immigrant population, the Canadian geese.
Most students share Kobylyatskiy’s sentiment over the federally protected birds. Not only do the geese leave greenish droppings all over the campus sidewalks, but they have been known to threaten and even attack students during their commute to class.
One student captured video in March of two geese attacking the doors to the Fine Arts Building. Lydia Nicholas, 18 year old Middle College student from Lexington said, “One day I was just leaving class and there were these two geese pecking on the door and were trying to get in. I took a Snapchat video because that’s not something you see every day.” That video can be found on the ESG’s website at esgonline.org.
So why are the geese so aggressive this year? It might be due to the fact that a pair of geese started a family right here on campus. On the Green Wall located between the CEM building and the North building, a mother goose sat from March to the end of April waiting patiently for her brood to hatch.
According to the Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s website allaboutbirds.org, Canadian geese create nests on the ground made of dirt, mosses, and lichens and nest from anywhere between 42 to 50 days. The nests can contain anywhere from two to eight eggs, all of which would hatch within a 24 hour period. Hatchlings covered in yellowish down could leave the nest at one to two days old, being able to walk, swim, and even dive.
The female goose typically does not leave the nest after laying her clutch of eggs. The male goose patrols the area surrounding the nest, however, he will not come towards the nest as to prevent the discovery of the nest. Students were most likely chased by the male goose during the past months.
Canadian geese nest anytime between mid-March to mid-May. The goslings were estimated to have hatched anytime between Thursday of last week (April 28) to Saturday of last week (April 30).
“It would be great if the college could handle it [the geese],” said Kobylyatskiy. He continued to propose that the college could make a fence or an enclosed habitat for the geese.
The Department of Natural Resources (DNR) list fencing as a possible way to deter geese on michigan.gov/dnr. Other authorized ways to fend off geese include a spray repellant made of grape extract, and scare devices such as noise makers, balloons, and brightly colored flags.
For more information on how to prevent Canadian goose attacks, check out the DNR’s website at michigan.gov/dnr. To see the video of two geese attacking the doors of the Fine Arts Building, check out the latest edition of the ESG online at esgonline.org.