Is the City Coming for Prospect Park’s Geese?

06/17/2011 2:34 PM |

Look at that delicious baby goose flesh!

  • Look at that delicious baby goose flesh!

The Canada geese that live in Prospect Park and other areas throughout the city are about to molt, which means they can’t fly, which means the city can show up, round ’em up, and kill ’em. Just like last year! “Goose counters from the federal Department of Agriculture are currently surveying parks in the vicinities of the city’s airports,” the Times‘ City Room blog reports, “and they expect to present their findings to other agencies soon, after which the annual cull will take place.” The paper makes it sound not like a matter of if, but when, even though Prospect Park’s goose population is down this year to 29, from hundreds last year.

Incredulously, the Times depicts the goose slaughter controversy as a matter of locavore wastenots vs. inefficient bureaucrats. “Much of the outcry prompted by the roundup…focused on the fact that after the geese were gassed, their bodies were dumped in a landfill, leaving literally tons of tasty, high-protein free-range meat (an adult goose can weigh 25 pounds) to rot in garbage heaps,” reporter Andy Newman writes. I don’t know what insular circles of elitist gourmands Mr. Newman moves in, but here in Brooklyn, among the outraged, the indignation has focused on the fact that geese in Prospect Park are not close enough to any airports to pose a serious threat to air traffic safety, and that even if they did, the government shouldn’t be in the business of preemptively slaughtering its residents. Killing geese to protect airplanes is akin to paving over nature preserves to create parking lots.

For those worried about all that tasty meat, it’ll be going to food banks in Pennsylvania.

[via Windsor Terrace Blog]

4 Comment

  • 1. They don’t constitue a serious threat? Is the writer an insurance liability expert, an ornithologist, or an expert in urban wildlife geography? If the answer is “none,” then I’d go ahead and say that claim is useless. Since obviously this is opinion and not based on fact or any type of honest interpretation of data, perhaps the author should poll those who have survived a goose being sucked into a jet engine while a plane is in flight. Perhaps their opinion might differ about what constitutes a serious threat?

    2. The statement that “even if they did pose a serious threat to air traffic, they shouldn’t be pre-emptively removed.” Comedy gold. Let’s play “analogies” with that gem. “The bed bugs in your house shouldn’t be pre-emptively removed.” “Rats in your bedroom shouldn’t be pre-emptively removed.” “A serial killer who is let into your apartment by another guest shouldn’t be pre-emptively removed.” After all, none are a “serious threat” up until the point that they are suddenly a quite serious threat (and you are dead or on life support). Wow, that claim sounds pretty stupid, afterall.

    There are plenty of intellectually honest reasons to be for or against lethal control of any animal. “Making a bunch of stuff up” does not qualify as an “intellectually honest reason.”

  • “Swamp thing.” What an appropriate name for the first poster.

    Sounds like an “intellectual” snob and pompass ass.

    This article is the most factual of the lot that has been written on this subject.

    No one in this city has died as result of Canada geese.

    However, three people, including a toddler have been killed by falling tree branches.

    We’re not chopping down all the trees!

    On the contrary, our Mayor wants a million new trees!

    Well, some of us want a million new geese!

    They’re pretty to look at and have funny and quirky personalities.

    Thanks, L Magazine for telling like it is. 😉

  • I, for one, adore and enjoy and have the utmost reverence for our canada geese.…

    Thank you so much for this report. Most of the media’s reports are lies and fabrications, it distorts if not totally attacks the truth which includes a 10+ year long killing spree perpetrated on our nation

  • as for the geese not posing a threat: “The radius from the airport was said to be seven miles in the multi-agency press release, increased from five miles in 2009. Prospect Park was alleged to be between six and seven miles from both LaGuardia and JFK airports. The determination of distance should be made as the crow (or goose) flies. With the aid of Google Earth, a tool equally available to the authorities, we measured the distance from the Prospect Park Lake to JFK airport at over 9 miles, and to LaGuardia at over 10 miles”…

    Also, if you want to talk about intellectual honesty, I don’t agree that geese in a lake miles from an airport pose an equal threat to one’s safety as would a serial killer in your bedroom…