The Capital Regional District (CRD) board has approved a working group to develop plans to control the Canada goose population in the region.
Studies commissioned by the CRD showed that Canada goose population in the region doubles in size every four years, which has ecological, economic, and social impacts, leading to the district looking to control it.
“The current population of non-migratory resident Canada geese are impacting farmland and degrading coastal ecosystems and waterways, public and private lands and increasing risk to public health across the region,” Colin Plant, the CRD board char said in a news release. “This Goose Management Service will allow us to coordinate our approach in dealing with this issue and reduce the impact of these geese on the region.”
The regional district will now establish a Regional Canada Goose Management Working Group to undertake outreach and education, develop an egg addling program, coordinate the necessary provincial and federal permits, and conduct strategic harvests.
The budget will be approved by April 2023, and will have annual assessments to determine success.
In January, Central Saanich farmer Dan Ponchet told CHEK News that Canada geese have done damage to his farmlands, with one field having an estimated $10,000 in damage.
“It is pretty devastating right down to the ground,” Ponchet said, looking at rows of torn-apart plants. “Anything that is going to get rid of some of these geese we’re totally for it. And I hope that people are if they want to continue to get locally produced produce.”
Egg addling, or preventing an egg from hatching, is an approved method of Canada goose population control by the Government of Canada. However, a permit must be obtained before addling and must be carried at all times while destroying or sterilizing eggs.