May 19, 2009
Dogs become soldiers in war on geese
Boston officials are considering a volunteer squad of dog owners to harass Canada geese along the banks of the Charles River.
The Esplanade Association already pays $24,000 for the services of Len Ellis, owner of two border collies, the Boston Globe reports. Ellis, a veteran of six years of war on geese, and his dogs spend about two hours a day in the Esplanade, a riverside park.
They have everything they need here, plenty of grass, plenty of water, plenty of places to nest, Ellis said.
You have to harass them. That's the name of the game -- harass them until they don't want to be here anymore.
In the last few decades, nesting Canada geese have become a major headache in New England and the Mid-Atlantic states. Instead of migrating north to breed, they produce and rear their young in parks, on golf courses and college and office campuses.
One solution favored by the U.S. Department of Agriculture is coating the eggs with corn oil. If this is done at the right time, the eggs will not hatch.