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Goose Sacrifice
July 13, 2010 9:52 PM   Subscribe

Notice something missing in Prospect Park in Brooklyn? All the geese have been rounded up and killed in the name of air traffic safety.
posted by hippybear (135 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

 
That last paragraph is kind of saddening. At least other places actually manage to not totally waste them.
posted by Burhanistan at 9:54 PM on July 13, 2010


That last paragraph is kind of saddening.

Agreed. Though I'm not really outraged about the culling. I get that. But what's the point of bagging them, double-bagging them in fact, and then dumping them in the landfill. If you're going to just dump them, then dump them. Packaging them up for dumping seems unnecessary.
posted by IvoShandor at 10:07 PM on July 13, 2010


Yeah, I'm not upset about them removing geese but the fact that perfectly good, plump fowl is treated like medical waste.
posted by Burhanistan at 10:09 PM on July 13, 2010 [5 favorites]


Notice how they very carefully kept it secret until the deed was done? What a pile of bullshit.
posted by Malor at 10:09 PM on July 13, 2010 [4 favorites]


What the fuck? I mean. Prospect Park? So does that mean that they will be killing any large bird that might just fly anywhere in NYC? How does that work?
posted by Splunge at 10:09 PM on July 13, 2010 [4 favorites]


“It’s a horrible end,” said Anne-Katrin Titze, who went to the park nearly every morning to feed the geese. “It’s eerie to see a whole population gone. There’s not one goose on this lake. It looks as though they’ve been Photoshopped out.”

Worst product placement ever.
posted by Mikey-San at 10:11 PM on July 13, 2010 [18 favorites]


Maybe the geese migrated. Maybe the airport used to be there, next to those geese. But maybe there's just no place in this world anymore for an old airport and its geese. I'm Bart Simpson.
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 10:11 PM on July 13, 2010 [10 favorites]


Those geese are cooked.
posted by iloveit at 10:15 PM on July 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


Are they Canada Geese? Because, as a Canadian, I unreservedly give you guys permission to kill them.
*RTFA*
Good.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 10:16 PM on July 13, 2010 [12 favorites]


I have spent enough of my life walking down shit-covered sidewalks while being hissed at because I dared encroach the section of campus they had taken over as their own to give a flying fuck (see what I did there?) about anything that might lessen the population of these insufferable things. The fact that they are unbelievably cute for the first few months of their wretched lives is the only thing that doesn't have me calling for outright extinction.
posted by 0xFCAF at 10:20 PM on July 13, 2010 [11 favorites]


Where do the geese go in summer?
posted by dersins at 10:21 PM on July 13, 2010


Where do the geese go in summer?

All over the damn sidewalk.
posted by dirigibleman at 10:24 PM on July 13, 2010 [53 favorites]


Is anyone else flashing on The Woolgatherer?

If so, you may have been a female drama geek in high school!
posted by lunasol at 10:26 PM on July 13, 2010


When they came for the geese, still I said nothing.

Honestly, I'm a little appalled at this. Couldn't they have just as easily clipped their wings instead? I guess I'm one of the few people who actually loved the geese in Prospect Park.
posted by bloody_bonnie at 10:27 PM on July 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


“It’s a horrible end,” said Anne-Katrin Titze, who went to the park nearly every morning to feed the geese.

The irony is, by feeding the geese, this person was actually part of the problem, and indirectly played a part in their deaths.

The entire gassing of birds reminds me of Headhunter, by Timothy Findley (who shared a nationality with the Canada geese), where D-Squads gas starlings and other birds.

Where I live, we have a similar "problem" with feral rabbits that have basically taken over a university campus (kind of like Tribbles). The university, after years and years of trying to accommodate PETA-esque community elements, has finally decided to cull the rabbits.

Kind of like others in this thread, I myself think it's a good idea, although I'm not exactly sure why, same as a bunch of internet commentators who think the best solution is a bow and arrow, a pot of water, and a little salt and pepper. Although I agree with the cull, part of me is always thinking about how Fiver and Hazel would react in Watership Down.
posted by KokuRyu at 10:36 PM on July 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


Couldn't they have just as easily clipped their wings instead?

No.
posted by fshgrl at 10:40 PM on July 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


In a hundred year's time, I am convinced all life on Earth will be:

1) Too cute to kill
2) Too delicious to allow to go extinct
3) Too numerous to be threatened with extinction

These are the things we evolutionarily select for.
posted by effugas at 10:41 PM on July 13, 2010 [13 favorites]


The irony is, by feeding the geese, this person was actually part of the problem, and indirectly played a part in their deaths.

Exactly what I came in to say.
posted by dobbs at 10:45 PM on July 13, 2010


And this is why you don't feed the waterfowl. First there's a few geeses and everyone's all "Awww, how cute!" Many children, old people and young lovers on old-timey dates have magical moments interacting with nature by feeding them. Soon, the word gets out to other geeses, and those geeses tell even MORE geeses, "Hey man, free food!" Soon, you have a couple hundred geese milling about Prosopect Park, pooping all over everything and acting like TOTAL jerks to other birds, people and small, useless dogs. Next thing you know, the geeses are flying around over the skies in NYC, not migrating and shit because of all the AWESOME free food and BANG! a plane flies right into a whole flock of geeses and next thing you know, you're making emergency landings on the Hudson River and Sully Sullenburger is all over my TV, writing books and shit. Now they're dead, and everyone's all "BOO! Parks Dept. BOO!"

In short, nothing good ever comes of feeding geese.
posted by KingEdRa at 10:47 PM on July 13, 2010 [42 favorites]


Geese are the pricks of the avian world.

Still, wasting the meat was stupid.
posted by codswallop at 10:51 PM on July 13, 2010


Notice how they very carefully kept it secret until the deed was done?

The general plan was announced. I'm sure they didn't announce specific times and locations because a few dozen (few hundred? few thousand?) protesters and their children would have come out to stop them and get some awful video of toddlers crying while geese are cages and trucked away. If they were going to kill the geese, this was how they needed to do it.

But they should have tried other ways to reduce the problem.
posted by pracowity at 10:54 PM on July 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


Brooklyn has a love/hate relationship with the parrots, too... http://www.brooklynparrots.com/

But wait until the swans and wild turkeys hear the geese are gone... then the park really see some large birds in action - and those guys are even less friendly.
posted by blaneyphoto at 10:55 PM on July 13, 2010


In short, nothing good ever comes of feeding geese.

Are you sure?
posted by benzenedream at 11:03 PM on July 13, 2010


I'm sure if you asked "Sully" Sullenberger he would say they were about 18 month too late.
posted by Daddy-O at 11:20 PM on July 13, 2010


Uh, months.
posted by Daddy-O at 11:34 PM on July 13, 2010


too bad they weren't surrounded by a flash mob of hungry bloodthirsty hipsters to initiate a royal featherpulling bird dressing you-catch-em-roast-em BBQ of righteous proportions in prospect park

400 geese, man 800-900 people could have easily overpowered any authorities that tried to stop it

we were this close
posted by Hammond Rye at 11:41 PM on July 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


In short, nothing good ever comes of feeding geese.

Except foie gras.
posted by UbuRoivas at 12:11 AM on July 14, 2010 [18 favorites]


This really gets my gander up.
posted by Elmore at 12:22 AM on July 14, 2010


If only we could populate our cities with some sort of smaller bird that poops everywhere.
posted by TwelveTwo at 12:49 AM on July 14, 2010 [7 favorites]


I have spent enough of my life walking down shit-covered sidewalks while being hissed at because I dared encroach the section of campus they had taken over as their own

When I worked as a lifeguard in an American summer camp, the local geese would shit all over the camp's jetty as soon as the lake was closed for the day. Or do you call 'em piers?

Anyway... 6 million places these fuckers could have done their biz, but they'd always choose the jetty. So that was my morning ritual. Scraping shit off the jetty before breakfast.

Why? Why did they do that?

I know there's a chance that they were shitting EVERYWHERE, and I only noticed the shit on the jetty. But I doubt that, coz it was doing my head in so much I turned it into a scientific experiment, was checking for other rogue shit, checking their shitting habits. The shit only seemed to be on the jetty.
posted by uncanny hengeman at 1:07 AM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


In short, nothing good ever comes of feeding geese.

Are you sure?
posted by uncanny hengeman at 1:08 AM on July 14, 2010


The goose ...

[dons sunglasses]

is cooked.

YEAAAAHHHHH

Wait, they threw them away?

[removes sunglasses]

That's terrible!
posted by zippy at 1:12 AM on July 14, 2010 [8 favorites]


Agreed. Though I'm not really outraged about the culling. I get that. But what's the point of bagging them, double-bagging them in fact, and then dumping them in the landfill. If you're going to just dump them, then dump them. Packaging them up for dumping seems unnecessary.

There are generally a whole set of rules that contractors have for disposing of dead animals. Double-bagging seems a bit pointless for freshly killed geese, but makes a lot of sense if it's, for example, a dead fox that's been festering in the sun on the side of the road for a few days. And once you've got a set of "dead animal disposal" rules, you gotta follow them or your boss shouts at you.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 2:57 AM on July 14, 2010


Outragefilter.
posted by crunchland at 3:12 AM on July 14, 2010


Couldn't they have rounded up the airplanes and killed them instead?
posted by Salvor Hardin at 3:22 AM on July 14, 2010 [15 favorites]


Double-bagging seems a bit pointless for freshly killed geese, but makes a lot of sense if it's, for example, a dead fox that's been festering in the sun on the side of the road for a few days. And once you've got a set of "dead animal disposal" rules, you gotta follow them or your boss shouts at you.

So are these rules in place for any particular reason? Disease, I suppose. But doesn't most landfill garbage fester with all sorts of diseases and parasites. I found this page from the CDC. I guess we package up all of our trash for dumping anyway. I wonder if incineration would have been better in this case. I know when I worked at a veterinary hospital we had to save all the dead animals in a deep freezer until the county health department could come get them. It was my understanding that they were then incinerated.
posted by IvoShandor at 3:31 AM on July 14, 2010


Where are the animals supposed to go when mankind takes away their natural habitat? Now, this may or may not be true in this particular instance, but in a general sense, that is the primary cause of these types of problems, right? Were many of these geese displaced from another area? I don't know. Do you?

I put myself through college as a new construction painter, and you wouldn't believe the number of homeowners who complained about wildlife eating their shrubs and the lot they built their new home was formerly a field or forest.

It's hard to like people sometimes.
posted by belvidere at 3:47 AM on July 14, 2010 [8 favorites]


Geese are dim and vicious. One was trapped and annoyed in my sisters kitchen once and I started rethinking my no deportation for criminal migrants stance. If they have wings.
posted by shinybaum at 3:48 AM on July 14, 2010


I was just talking about this with some friends who visited from Bend, Oregon where they had to do this at a park, there. They donated the meat to homeless shelters, which is cool, but it still sucks that people made the problem happen by feeding them.

Anyway, we were debating it back and forth for a while and I can see about fifteen different sides of the same fence. In the end my final decision/opinion was simply "Geese are motherfuckers."

What do you call a 15-30 foot tall goose? A flying fucking tyrannosaurus with a bad attitude, that's what. If geese had thumbs they'd hunt down and exterminate every human and primate on the planet just to be dicks. If we were lucky. If we were unlucky, they'd rape us first. Did you know that many waterfowl have explosively erecting, corkscrew shaped dicks? Fuck a duck, indeed. Yeah, I'll bet you'll remember those images well the next time you go to feed the geese.r

And they'd be laughing the whole time in that nasally, raucous "HAAAAAaaa HAAAAAAaaa HAAaa Haaaaaaaaaa" thing they do. It's not honking. They're laughing at us. They think we're ugly and stupid - yet they're practically the Klingons or Romulans of the bird world. Seriously, what were you thinking, Hitchcock? Starlings, crows and blackbirds? You should have used geese, man. Can you think of anything more terrifying then hundreds of thousands of geese thirsty for spilling human blood? Just writing the concept down is giving me a case of the howling fantods. I'm going to have nightmares for a month of ten thousand clacky, muddy bills pinching and twisting the living flesh off of my bones one small nip at a time... no, it's too much! I can't even talk about it any more!

Hell, even Skuas have less of an attitude problem. In fact I was talking to an Arctic Tern just the other day and she said that it's common knowledge that Skuas are just bad-ass gulls who were smart enough and hardy enough to flee North America eons ago to get away from the all the damn geese.

Still, meh. What a waste. I bet it would have been cheaper to capture most of them, shove them in crate and drop them of somewhere remote. The North Pole, for example. Or maybe Mars. The ones that come back get magnetic implants or collars to screw with the cellular magnetite compasses in their heads and get dropped off again. Say, downtown Toronto or Vancouver. Canadians LOVE geese. The love geese even more than they love Celine Dion.
posted by loquacious at 3:52 AM on July 14, 2010 [17 favorites]


too bad they weren't surrounded by a flash mob of hungry bloodthirsty hipsters to initiate a royal featherpulling bird dressing you-catch-em-roast-em BBQ of righteous proportions in prospect park

Think of all the cool indian headdresses they could have made with the feathers, too.
posted by Devils Rancher at 3:54 AM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


I hope they at least let Spider Jerusalem in on the fun.
posted by cthuljew at 3:56 AM on July 14, 2010


KingEdRa: "In short, nothing good ever comes of feeding geese."

Many Hong Kongers would disagree.
posted by bwg at 4:15 AM on July 14, 2010


If geese had thumbs they'd hunt down and exterminate every human and primate on the planet just to be dicks.

You just overloaded my irony detector.
posted by Salvor Hardin at 4:32 AM on July 14, 2010


Stay classy, New York.
posted by turgid dahlia at 4:37 AM on July 14, 2010


Notice something missing in Prospect Park in Brooklyn?

Well, me; haven't been there in over fifteen years. I keep meaning to go back someday, but you know how it is.
posted by Halloween Jack at 4:47 AM on July 14, 2010


Clearly, the better solution would be to round up the geese feeders and gas them. I expect the geese would not write angry letters to the press about it. And they would have more places to poop.
posted by GenjiandProust at 4:48 AM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


Can't someone invent some kind of anti-geese spray? Pour that all over the plane. Or maybe we can attach some kind of gremlin to the outside of the planes so that they can scare off any potential geese who venture too close?
posted by Fizz at 4:55 AM on July 14, 2010


You just overloaded my irony detector.

You caught me. I didn't know they still made those.
posted by loquacious at 5:02 AM on July 14, 2010


"Geese People are dim and vicious." ftfy
posted by HuronBob at 5:04 AM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


Damned Socialist geese, coming over here and crashing our planes.
posted by elsietheeel at 5:11 AM on July 14, 2010


Or maybe we can attach some kind of gremlin to the outside of the planes so that they can scare off any potential geese who venture too close?

If they're not afraid to fly kamikaze attacks against a half-million pounds of pressurized metal armed with thousands of superheated, whirling knives and tens of thousands of gallons of explosive fuel flying hundreds of miles an hour, what makes you think they can be simply frightened off by attaching a few ugly, toothy teddy bears?
posted by loquacious at 5:14 AM on July 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


I hate geese. They constantly block my driveway, and will. not. move.
posted by sonic meat machine at 5:21 AM on July 14, 2010


If they're not afraid to fly kamikaze attacks against a half-million pounds of pressurized metal armed with thousands of superheated, whirling knives and tens of thousands of gallons of explosive fuel flying hundreds of miles an hour, what makes you think they can be simply frightened off by attaching a few ugly, toothy teddy bears?

About twenty or thirty of these attached to a plane would probably do the job.
posted by Fizz at 5:26 AM on July 14, 2010


DONATING GOOSE MEAT TO FOOD BANKS?
posted by kuujjuarapik at 5:26 AM on July 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


Why? Why did they do that?

Cause geese and fuckers and you can't even eat their meat half the time. It's like they're deliberately trying to be as useless and mean as possible.
posted by The Whelk at 5:35 AM on July 14, 2010


I hate geese. They constantly block my driveway, and will. not. move.

You're in a car, they're on foot. I think I see a way out of this.
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 5:47 AM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


I know when I worked at a veterinary hospital we had to save all the dead animals in a deep freezer until the county health department could come get them. It was my understanding that they were then incinerated.

They go to the landfill here, according to the person I asked at the Humane Society. Seriously, on the list of posted rates -- so much per ton of green waste, so much for regular trash, so much for tires -- there's a set charge per carcass for dumping dead livestock. No double bagging required, either.
posted by Forktine at 5:53 AM on July 14, 2010


3) Too numerous to be threatened with extinction

These are the things we evolutionarily select for.


Evolution's own "Too Big To Fail."
posted by The Michael The at 5:55 AM on July 14, 2010


Where are their graves? I wish to spit on them.
posted by tommasz at 5:56 AM on July 14, 2010


to the perpetrators of this fowl deed; watch your back. this is the reason we murdered saddam hussein
posted by kitchenrat at 6:03 AM on July 14, 2010


Hey, I have geese in my neighborhood they can have.

(Can you seriously eat them? Don't tempt me.)
posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 6:15 AM on July 14, 2010


I hate geese. They constantly block my driveway, and will. not. move.

They've blocked the road for me here in my neighborhood. I just drive thru them slowly and they part, majestically, like the Red Sea.
posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 6:16 AM on July 14, 2010


.
posted by brevator at 6:22 AM on July 14, 2010


So are these rules in place for any particular reason? Disease, I suppose. But doesn't most landfill garbage fester with all sorts of diseases and parasites.

It's easier (and less unpleasant) to handle and transport the carcass if it's in a sealed bag.

It's not about the landfill, it's about all the handling and transportation of the carcass up until the landfill.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 6:24 AM on July 14, 2010


3) Too numerous to be threatened with extinction

Nothing is too numerous to be threatened with extinction if it's tasty enough.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 6:27 AM on July 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


Geese are dim and vicious.

Dammit. "Geese" is the name of my band since 1994. That's awful.

Of course, now I have a new album title (Dim and Vicious...)
posted by grubi at 6:27 AM on July 14, 2010


They make poops the size of grown man poops. They are the size of my six year old daughter. They give me the side-eye when I'm running around the lake. Who knows what they're plotting?

I have a scorched-earth policy toward geese that flies in the face of my general bird-friendliness.
posted by padraigin at 6:32 AM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


I live right next to Prospect Park and this speaks to the ridiculous attitude towards animals here. Canadian Geese are overpopulated and...delicious. Despite the city being what it is, there are numerous people in NYC (from bowhunters who practice out in Queens to the numerous small slaughterhouses that pepper the city) with the skills to humanely kill and butcher these geese- myself included. But the Park rounds them up and wastes them.

The article on Goose Meat contamination posted by kuujjuarapik is also ridiculous. The geese were contaminated with lead from bullets, not from the environment. Pesticide use is not substantial in the Prospect Park area. I hope people who are so worried about this don't eat commercial chicken at all. A commercial chicken farm makes Brooklyn look like the pristine high wilderness.
posted by melissam at 6:33 AM on July 14, 2010


Now, this may or may not be true in this particular instance, but in a general sense, that is the primary cause of these types of problems, right?

Not with geese. Geese have shitloads of natural habitat.

The problem with geese is that local populations breed out of control (they get fed, there aren't any predators), and (natural) migrants don't leave because the food never stops.

Were many of these geese displaced from another area? I don't know. Do you?

These geese were not displaced from another area.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 6:35 AM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


The answer is more swans. Swans hate geese, and can back it up. Every year, a couple of swans arrive at the local lake and stay for a few days. During that time, there are no geese on the lake, just swans and ducks. When the swans move on, the geese come back.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 6:39 AM on July 14, 2010


Metafilter: They make poops the size of grown man poops.
posted by Windigo at 6:41 AM on July 14, 2010


Swans also don't chase people around screaming and honking like Satan's own foot soldiers.
posted by The Whelk at 6:41 AM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


Word has it that a resistance group in Williamsburg smuggled a gaggle out of Prospect Park and gave them new hipster identities. They saved many a goose from the Honkercaust.
posted by dr_dank at 6:42 AM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


Well, at least the geese didn't have to deal with indefinite detention.
posted by swift at 6:46 AM on July 14, 2010


Swans also don't chase people around screaming and honking like Satan's own foot soldiers.

"An angry swan is capable of breaking your arm, taking out an eye and/or turning your kayak over. If the Cob feels that his mate or chicks is being threaten he can and will attack."
posted by Floydd at 6:49 AM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


Fine, I am hereby placing a ban on all waterfowl within 50 feet of me unless they are roasting in a honey-soy sauce at 175 for about 4 hours.


serve with long-grain rice
posted by The Whelk at 6:50 AM on July 14, 2010


Our backyard pond gets invaded by geese a couple times a year and all the other friendly waterfowl (ducks, herons, and other waders) disappear. I can't even go onto our back patio without them harassing me. I never feed them, but I'd guess that other people do. I do have to watch where I step after they leave though...

Geese are the lakebound version of seagulls. Both need to be stopped before their plots come to fruition. Seriously. I had a seagull steal half a sandwich out of my hand one day at the beach. Whenever I see a tourist feeding a seagull I have to resist the urge to run up and scream at them to stop. Apparently a squawking mass of feathers that won't leave you alone is relaxing to them. It's not to me.
posted by This Guy at 7:02 AM on July 14, 2010


I just drive thru them slowly and they part, majestically, like the Red Sea.

...implying you need to drive faster to get the job done.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 7:12 AM on July 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


"Swans also don't chase people around screaming and honking like Satan's own foot soldiers."

never been around an angry swan, eh? I watched two of them fend off a couple of jet skis once (jet skis were white, looked liked overgrown swans invading the territory ), kept the jet skis from continuing down the river.
posted by HuronBob at 7:13 AM on July 14, 2010


I had chicken for dinner last night.
posted by mecran01 at 7:23 AM on July 14, 2010


The shit only seemed to be on the jetty.

There's a lake front park in Seattle that's been closed during renovations that has a little dock for hand launched boats. The geese have turned it into one massive pile-o-poo. I sure hope they budgeted for cleaning that off somehow.

Geese are the lakebound version of seagulls.

Here in Seattle, we get both, on the same lake. Seagull poo is a whole different texture from goose poo.
posted by nomisxid at 7:24 AM on July 14, 2010


As a Canadian, I promise you that NYC can not kill too many of those fuckers.

You should feel the same about this as you would a rat cull. Perhaps even less upset: rats are nicer creatures.
posted by five fresh fish at 7:28 AM on July 14, 2010 [3 favorites]


Rats can make fine, friendly pets.

Geese do not.
posted by The Whelk at 7:30 AM on July 14, 2010 [3 favorites]


The answer is more swans. Swans hate geese, and can back it up.

And when the swans get too numerous, what's our next choice from the menu of increasingly nasty waterfowl?
posted by tommasz at 8:04 AM on July 14, 2010


"Explosive eversion and functional morphology of the duck penis supports sexual conflict in waterfowl genitalia"

Heh. Heh heh.

"Explosive eversion and functional morphology of the duck penis supports sexual conflict in waterfowl genitalia"

Tee hee hee ha ha ha

"Explosive eversion and functional morphology of the duck penis supports sexual conflict in waterfowl genitalia"

AAAHAHAHAHAHAHA *snort* GEEHEEHEEHEE *snort snort* WHOOHOOHOOHOO

"Explosive eversion and functional morphology of the duck penis supports sexual conflict in waterfowl genitalia"

Whew. *wipes tears* hee hee hee
posted by slogger at 8:14 AM on July 14, 2010


And when the swans get too numerous, what's our next choice from the menu of increasingly nasty waterfowl?

Any questions?
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 8:15 AM on July 14, 2010


Why did the goose cross the road?

Got me, but they did this morning. I had to wait for them to finish before I was able to drive on. I even took a picture: Geese.

I am a bit confused why they didn't just harvest them. I'm not sure I've ever eaten a goose, but just throwing them away is a waste.
posted by cjorgensen at 8:21 AM on July 14, 2010


But wait until the swans and wild turkeys hear the geese are gone... then the park really see some large birds in action - and those guys are even less friendly.

Yeah holy--swans? When I was taking a taxi to the airport in Prague about 6 or 7 years back, we drove over a bridge where I saw 5 cops dealing with a swan related situation. It had gotten up on the bridge and was acting aggressively, and the 5 cops that had surrounded it on the sidewalk had no idea what to do. It would sort of lunge in one their directions, and whichever cops were near it would scatter, not knowing how to deal with an angry swan. They're pretty big and intimidating when they want to be.
posted by Kirk Grim at 8:23 AM on July 14, 2010


Taser happy Cops should have no qualms tasing a goddamn swan.
posted by Burhanistan at 8:27 AM on July 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


Wow, all this goose-hate and only one or two people thinking we collectively might be the problem?

Are the anti-goose crowd really against wild birds treating a park as somewhere to stop off or live? Or blaming birds for throwing themselves selfishly into our planes?
posted by imperium at 8:29 AM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


1) Too cute to kill

Dude, I wonder what koala tastes like ...
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 8:32 AM on July 14, 2010


Well, probably eucalyptus-flavored chicken...
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 8:33 AM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


And when the swans get too numerous, what's our next choice from the menu of increasingly nasty waterfowl?

In New York, the next logical animal to thin out the swans is piranha. AFAIK, they should die off in the winter.

Alternately, bull sharks and a NO SWIMMING sign.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 8:38 AM on July 14, 2010


Oh man. That's fucked up.
posted by crunchland at 8:43 AM on July 14, 2010


Are the anti-goose crowd really against wild birds treating a park as somewhere to stop off or live?

Yes, if they're Canada geese. Absolutely, positively, completely yes, without reservation.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 8:43 AM on July 14, 2010


I was coming in here to snort derisively at all the whining and crying on behalf of the flocks of evil, angry pillow fodder, but am pleased to see that the geese have blown their reps everywhere. An incident involving my two toddlers and a flock of vicious CA geese years ago deciding they wanted my backyard for their own led me to the point of, "Extinction? Normally I'm against it, but in THIS case..." If only I hadn't gotten rid of the guns because of the children. Silly me. I should have ARMED the freakin' children.

Eat them, bury them, burn them, whatever. Any species that can get a majority of MeFites --not the most war-mongering subset on the planet-- to applaud their demise is working overtime at being assholes.
posted by umberto at 9:06 AM on July 14, 2010


3) Too numerous to be threatened with extinction

Don't get cocky.
posted by General Tonic at 9:07 AM on July 14, 2010


Are the anti-goose crowd really against wild birds treating a park as somewhere to stop off or live?

No, it's just that (if I may speak for any), we recognize that the presence of the geese is an unfortunate symptom of an environment out of balance.

We killed all the foxes, snakes, weasels, river otters, coyotes, raccoons and anything else that eat geese and goose eggs. We built an urban park for the humans that just happens to be a safe, quiet, zone that offers a lot of food options, including people that directly feed the geese food made for humans. And we built an airport nearby.

This is a recipe for dead humans and other human-focused nuisances.

Since humans > geese, and geese are not endangered, the geese lose in this equation. It would've been better to keep the foxes, snakes, etc. But humans aren't terribly great at long-term planning.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 9:09 AM on July 14, 2010 [6 favorites]


The answer is more swans. Swans hate geese, and can back it up.

And when the swans get too numerous, what's our next choice from the menu of increasingly nasty waterfowl?


Skinner: Well, I was wrong; the lizards are a godsend.
Lisa: But isn't that a bit short-sighted? What happens when we're overrun by lizards?
Skinner: No problem. We simply release wave after wave of Chinese needle snakes. They'll wipe out the lizards.
Lisa: But aren't the snakes even worse?
Skinner: Yes, but we're prepared for that. We've lined up a fabulous type of gorilla that thrives on snake meat.
Lisa: But then we're stuck with gorillas!
Skinner: No, that's the beautiful part. When wintertime rolls around, the gorillas simply freeze to death.
posted by Fizz at 9:11 AM on July 14, 2010 [3 favorites]


Incorrect: It looks as though they’ve been Photoshopped out.

Correct: It looks as though the park was enhanced using Adobe® Photoshop® software.

Proper use of the Photoshop trademark
posted by Eater at 9:28 AM on July 14, 2010


Notice something missing in Prospect Park in Brooklyn?

Come to think of it, I did notice the lack of used syringes. WHAT IS HAPPENING TO OUR PARK!
posted by wcfields at 9:37 AM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


You can follow Prospect Park on Facebook. They're real shitty about moderating and just keep posting goose articles. There's some pretty entertaining crazy (see: Godwin's Law) going on in the comments. People are flaming out on Facebook on a fan page. Where all their friends and family can see it.
posted by edbles at 9:43 AM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


After reading through the comments in this thread I have concluded that geese are the humans of the bird world only we are more vicious, more territorial and more ruthless than, not only geese, but all other the species on the planet combined. The Killer Human mentality just does not impress me. Kill kill kill. Kill the spider. Kill the ant. Kill the goose. Why? Because it's in MY way. Our obsession with carpeting the world rather than wearing shoes will be our undoing.
posted by chance at 9:49 AM on July 14, 2010 [3 favorites]


So much goose hatred, wow! I'm sad they killed them; you'd think they could relocate them, or make delicious dinners out of them, or something.

OTOH as a pilot, geese fucking terrify me. They're big, slow, and stupid. They don't get out of the way. And they seem to like to loiter near airports. A single goose will completely wreck the little planes I fly. And a flock of them, as we know, will take out an airliner. Fortunately at my home airport we don't have any permanent geese. During migration season the fire truck drives out and shoots flares near them to scare the visitors away. I don't have much faith it really works.

Yesterday while I was climbing out from Colusa, CA a hawk flew right up next to me, probably 30 feet away. Fortunately hawks are smart and nimble enough to get out of the way, cuz there's nothing I can do.
posted by Nelson at 9:53 AM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


They should use opportunities like these to burn a few dozen each as offerings to various gods on a just in case basis. Crom, Cthulu, Kali, Torak etc. You never know when a well timed offering might stave off some angry god raining down destruction.
posted by Babblesort at 9:54 AM on July 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


Kill kill kill. Kill the spider. Kill the ant. Kill the goose. Kill kill kill. Kill the spider. Kill the ant. Kill the goose. Why? Because it's in MY way.

This sounds exactly like what I imagine my cat's internal monologue must be. You cannot move an object within 2' of that little bastard without him attempting to destroy it.
posted by edbles at 9:55 AM on July 14, 2010 [3 favorites]


This happened with UNM campus and crows. IIRC, they poisoned them, and not sure of the ultimate outcome. Not many people like crows, although there was some resistance to the idea.
posted by krinklyfig at 10:17 AM on July 14, 2010


And when the swans get too numerous, what's our next choice from the menu of increasingly nasty waterfowl?

Ostrich.

Not waterfowl, but nasty and violent. To deal with them when they overpopulate we'll need yaks.
posted by krinklyfig at 10:20 AM on July 14, 2010


"we are more vicious, more territorial and more ruthless than, not only geese, but all other the species on the planet combined."

Antihumanism is fun and all, but have you actually met any animals lately? We are just the only ones able to take it to extremes, but suffice to say, if you gave cats or most other animals human brainpower, the world wouldn't exactly be nicer.

It's a little strange that people are so upset about removing wild animals for human sake. That's kind of how we grow food...habitat clearing and depredation permits anyone?
posted by melissam at 10:21 AM on July 14, 2010


3) Too numerous to be threatened with extinction

There's this great quotation that I found in a book about the extinction of the Great Auk. I don't have it in front of me but the gist of it was well of course the Great Auk was going to go extinct, it didn't have the breeding rate of the Passenger Pigeon. Written sometime just before the pigeons went extinct. So be careful with those super abundant species because sometimes they too become extinct.

With regards to the swans, I'm pleased to see that whoever was in charge decided on a lethal cull. All too often these control plans end up being long and expensive in an attempt to please those who don't like seeing anything killed. Canada Geese, at these numbers, are not a part of a healthy ecosystem. They modify the environment for their own good (cropping the grass) and out compete other animals that could use this park.

The other thing is that this population level wouldn't be sustainable forever and sooner or later something (disease most likely) would come along to bring the population level back down. I think it's better to bring down the numbers more humanely than wait for them all to suffer.
posted by hydrobatidae at 10:28 AM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


If you fuck with geese, they will bite you in the face.
posted by cereselle at 10:29 AM on July 14, 2010


A swan attacked a girlfriend of mine while she was running around Geenlake in Seattle.

A whole group of men stepped in to beat it away, but it kept coming after her and was very difficult to discourage.

It ended up pulling out quite a bit of her hair, and she had strange-looking linear bruises on her face, neck and arms due to blows from the leading edges of the wings.

She had braided her long black hair into loose pigtails for the run.
posted by jamjam at 10:30 AM on July 14, 2010


Animals don't build nuclear weapons. YOU CAN'T HUG YOUR CHILDREN WITH NUCLEAR ARMS!
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 10:35 AM on July 14, 2010


I read an awesome article once (maybe in Harper's?) about a business park that was afflicted with Canada geese.

They hired some local border collies to spend the day chasing the geese into the picturesque little pond. Eventually the geese would give up in frustration and fly away for calmer pastures.

I think the border collie solution is drastically under-utilized in geese situations!

Not that I blame Prospect Park for killing all the geese. Because seriously, fuck geese. But if you happen to own a border collie or similar breed, do consider offering to rent them out as goose deterrent!
posted by ErikaB at 11:00 AM on July 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


> Dude, I wonder what koala tastes like ...

Chlamydia. They taste like chlamydia. Dinner, anyone?
posted by heyho at 11:13 AM on July 14, 2010


I read that grape kool-aid is anathema to geese. But IMO, why bother with kool-aid when you can just kill them.

If the Canadian Goose was extinctified, every other waterfowl would celebrate their demise.
posted by five fresh fish at 11:19 AM on July 14, 2010


Where are the animals supposed to go when mankind takes away their natural habitat? Now, this may or may not be true in this particular instance, but in a general sense, that is the primary cause of these types of problems, right? Were many of these geese displaced from another area? I don't know. Do you?

I think in this case it's more a matter of us creating habitat for them. Same thing goes for lots of other animals. Rats, deer, raccoons, squirrels, etc. Lots of food + few large predators = epic win. Some migratory species stop migrating entirely once they find a place with year-round access to food, open water, etc.
posted by pjaust at 11:31 AM on July 14, 2010


She had braided her long black hair into loose pigtails for the run.

Ah, good, taking notes here to keep violent geese away .... no pigtails, got it. Also, don't fuck with them, or they will bite your face off.
posted by krinklyfig at 11:40 AM on July 14, 2010


Kill kill kill. Kill the spider. Kill the ant. Kill the goose. Why? Because it's in MY way.

You forgot about the poop.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 12:27 PM on July 14, 2010


Dude, I wonder what koala tastes like ...

Chlamydia. They taste like chlamydia.


Just how did koala get a sexually-transmitted disease? I mean, it's not like anyone would...

They wouldn't!

Would they?
posted by Kirth Gerson at 12:30 PM on July 14, 2010


Koalas are angry, mean anti-social drug addicts with fire crotch and 3-inch long nails that do not like you. They are proof of an unjust universe.
posted by The Whelk at 12:38 PM on July 14, 2010


In other Australian-related-food news... Kangaroo is quite tasty. As is alligator.

But wait, we're talking about geese? Good riddance. Fuckers always be messin' up my golf shoes. Also, one bit my sister at the beech one time too, just to be a dick. I don't think there's a single person who lives in goose-country that doesn't have a similar story.
posted by antifuse at 12:45 PM on July 14, 2010


Honestly, Kirk, how could they not get an STD? Koalas don't have a condom industry serving their safety needs. Poor little fuckers bareback it all the time.
posted by five fresh fish at 1:00 PM on July 14, 2010


Koala birth is even creepier.

"At birth the joey, only a quarter of an inch long, crawls into the downward-facing pouch on the mother's belly (which is closed by a drawstring-like muscle that the mother can tighten at will) and attaches itself to one of the two teats."


That's right, the bug-like larval Koala has to crawl out and make it to the pouch while avoiding getting eaten by parasites in the fur.
posted by The Whelk at 1:03 PM on July 14, 2010


The article on Goose Meat contamination posted by kuujjuarapik is also ridiculous. The geese were contaminated with lead from bullets, not from the environment.

That's not true. The federal government now requires the use of steel shot when hunting waterfowl, and has for over 20 years.

"The most significant hazard to wildlife is through direct ingestion of spent lead shot and bullets, lost fishing sinkers, tackle and related fragments, or through consumption of wounded or dead prey containing lead shot, bullets or fragments."

This was the source of great consternation among hunters because the steel shot is not as effective and does not have the range of lead shot. But, now I know some farmers that will not let you hunt on their land unless you use steel shot even if the law does not require it.
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 1:38 PM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


And when the swans get too numerous, what's our next choice from the menu of increasingly nasty waterfowl?

Velociraptors in speedboats, obviously. What a ridiculous question.
posted by elizardbits at 1:46 PM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


Lake Merritt in Oakland has hundreds of geese festering around, and it makes running around the lake an Olympian challenge in terms of avoiding poop and pissed of birds. I. Hate. Geese.
posted by QuarterlyProphet at 1:59 PM on July 14, 2010


Why is everyone so quick to justify this fowlocaust?
posted by nomad at 2:02 PM on July 14, 2010


In other Australian-related-food news... Kangaroo is quite tasty. As is alligator.

We only have a couple of species of crocs.
posted by uncanny hengeman at 7:09 PM on July 14, 2010


While I'm not a particular fan of geese, the geese that summered in the pond behind my apartment weren't too bad. They just added to the pile of dog poop that the dog owners in the building left. The ducks and beavers didn't seem to mind them, either.

Of course, they were completely non-aggressive, even when approached. They'd just walk away unless it was some little dog yapping at them, in which case they could be bothered to fly.

Not that I care if animals get culled when their population gets out of hand. It's not as if these geese are on the verge of extinction or anything.
posted by wierdo at 7:45 PM on July 14, 2010


Sounds like Canadian geese are bad mofos. Ducks rule the roost in Perth. Some of the larger lakes you'll get lots of water fowl and black swans too, and always *just a few* geese. Like, maybe 4.

Weird.

Oh, and the geese here all pretty benevolent, not sure what species they are. Swans are the only ones wot will hiss and chase humans, and then only for a couple of months per year when they're protecting their cygnets. So they get a free pass for that.
posted by uncanny hengeman at 8:09 PM on July 14, 2010


Breaking geese news!

http://www.upi.com/Odd_News/2010/07/14/Neighboring-town-accused-of-dumping-geese/UPI-58281279118872/
posted by uncanny hengeman at 8:58 PM on July 14, 2010


A true goose hunter will strangle his prey with his bare hands.
posted by Burhanistan at 9:22 PM on July 14, 2010


Brooklyn has a love/hate relationship with the parrots, too... Brooklynparrots.com

Hate? HATE? How could you hate those precious birdies? Anyone that hates a Quaker parrot has something seriously wrong with them.

I may be a touch biased here.
Is the parrot with the gun still behind me? Help!
posted by Splunge at 5:20 AM on July 15, 2010


We only have a couple of species of crocs.

Whoops, /me is still recovering from a wedding on the weekend, and needs some more sleep. Of course, I meant that kangaroo and CROCODILE are delicious.

Also, the thought of quarter-inch-long baby koalas seriously creeps me out.
posted by antifuse at 7:01 AM on July 15, 2010


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