About Canada Geese and How to Avoid Conflicts with Them

Lisa C. Community, Daily Life, Fun Facts, Newcomer Information

Fun facts about Canada Geese
  • Throughout Canada, there are 11 subspecies of the Canada Goose.
  • Canada Geese can live up to 20 years. The oldest known wild goose was a 33-year-old female.
  • They feed on grasses but also eat garbage or compost.
  • And in case you haven’t noticed, geese are quite comfortable in an urban environment, such in towns and cities.
Canada Geese are beautiful but can be a problem:
  • At airports, Canada Geese can be a significant safety threat to aircraft.
  • Geese are territorial and can become very aggressive to people (including children or seniors) and pets, when you get too close to them, especially when goslings (young geese) are around.
  • Goose droppings can pose a big problem. Though there is no direct evidence that goose droppings pose a danger to human health, people can slip on the droppings and may not be able to sit on the grass.
Avoid human-geese conflict by
  • Being fully aware of your surroundings and keeping your distance from Canadian geese, especially when goslings are present.
  • Educating your young children and telling them not to chase after geese.
  • Keeping your pet on a leash.
  • Leaving the geese alone and leting them do their thing.
What to do (and not to do) when Canada Geese become unfriendly to you
  • Watch out for warning signs. Right before an attack, the goose might stick out its neck straight, pump its head up or down, honk or hiss.
  • Take a deep breath, stay calm and slowly walk away from the goose.
  • Do not try to please them and win them over by feeding them human food.
  • Do not act aggressively yourself. Do not kick or throw things at the goose.

If you find an injured or orphaned wild bird or animal in distress, please contact the Calgary Wildlife Rehabilitation Society hotline at 403-239-2488, for tips, instructions and advice, or look at the website at www.calgarywildlife.org for more information.

Word of the Day:

Droppings: feces, stools or turds of rats or birds