Canada Geese are a big problem for the City of Mount Vernon - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Canada Geese are a big problem for the City of Mount Vernon

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MOUNT VERNON, Ill. -- The City of Mount Vernon is working with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Wildlife Services in hopes of taking care of an ongoing problem in one of their parks: Canada Geese.

Nathan McKenna, Assistant City Manager of Mount Vernon, says he counted between 100 and 150 geese at the Veterans Memorial park last summer and that over population of Canada Geese has become a growing problem. 

McKenna explains, "We have a five-acre lake at our Veterans Park and over the years we've received multiple complaints of the geese. It's in the middle of a residential area so they're always in the driving lanes on the roads. Plus, people feed them which compounds the issue of the droppings on the walking trail, that we're continuously cleaning off."

And since the lake is so close to playground equipment, that leads to health concerns for children according to McKenna. Despite these concerns the geese are a federally protected bird so proper steps must be taken.

McKenna says, "We've been taking steps, the first step was creating the nuisance, we put strobes on the lake to try and distract them and scare them off, that didn't really have any effect."

McKenna says the next step is a process called egg oiling, "We oil the eggs which causes them not to hatch and really it's the most humane way of destroying the eggs because usually whenever a goose hatches they return to where they were hatched and lay more eggs so we're trying to break that cycle.

If the egg oiling doesn't fix the problem then the next step is for the USDA to conduct a charity harvest.

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