AR-News: (US-WA) Anti-geese editorial
wolfcrest at hotmail.com
Tue Sep 2 18:15:49 EDT 2003
JANET JENSEN | THE NEWS TRIBUNE
Humane Society of the U.S. staff members oiled Canada geese eggs in March
2002 at a Kent apartment complex.
Humans vs. geese: The battle escalates
The News Tribune
Some Canada geese still do what they are supposed to: migrate northward to
Canada and Alaska for the summer and southward to warmer and sunnier places
for the winter.
The others have wised up. Millions of "Canada" geese in the United States
have either gotten out of the migratory habit or never got into it. Why do
all that strenuous flying and honking when those wingless creatures with the
goofy short necks provide glorious banquets of grass to feast on all year
And so cities across America have seen a proliferation of Canada geese in
parks, golf courses and other urban pastures.
These fowls are pleasant enough to look at, but they do gobble that grass,
and what goes in the beak comes out the other end.
Three pounds worth per bird. Every day. For a good-sized flock of 100 geese,
that adds up to about 52 tons of goose poop a year. It fouls swimming areas
and covers parks with slippery, smelly, bacteria-ridden doo-doo.
Check out, for example, the grassy bowl at the entrance of Point Defiance.
It used to be a great place for kids to play and adults to just lay back and
enjoy the sun. Now it is covered with feces. Really covered. Human visitors
literally have to watch their every step to stay out of them.
Federal wildlife agents have been capturing and euthanizing non-migratory
geese since 1997, but big flocks of them still abound.
Now the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is going to the mattresses. It is
proposing an August hunting season - with relaxed rules - to bring down
resident goose populations in rural areas. For cities and suburbs, it is
proposing to empower state and local governments to wage war on the geese -
which until now could only be exterminated by federal agents.
Sounds good. Anything that would thin those gaggles sounds good.
Of course, some animal rights people will object to any such widening of the
anti-goose offensive. They argue that geese populations could be controlled
more humanely with non-lethal methods, such as spraying oil on their eggs.
Whatever - but the geese have got to go. We'll start shedding tears over
these migratory slackers when they start using the public toilets.
(Published 12:01AM, September 2nd, 2003)
Groups Lock Horns Over Bison Range
The bison are grazing placidly on the wide Montana prairies, but plans for
their future care have created a storm among humans. Thousands of
conservationists and others have written or called the Interior Department
to protest negotiations to transfer management of the National Bison Range
to a tribal government. Geographically, the dispute centers on 18,000 acres
at Moiese, Mont., home not only to hundreds of bison but also to elk, black
bears, coyotes, ground squirrels and more than 200 species of birds.
Politically, it focuses on the Bush administration's environmental record
and the rights and independence of Native Americans. And that cross section
of interests has created strange bedfellows. (09/02/03) Washington Post
In fact, if one person is unkind to an animal it is considered to be
cruelty, but where a lot of people are unkind to animals, especially in the
name of commerce, the cruelty is condoned and, once large sums of money are
at stake, will be defended to the last by otherwise intelligent people.
-- Ruth Harrison, author of Animal Machines
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