On this page you will find answers to the most frequently asked questions about how to control Canada geese using trained Border Collies.
Canada geese were nearly extinct several years ago so they became Federally protected. While this has saved a beautiful bird, it has also presented golf courses, private estates, corporate properties, campuses, parks, and beaches with a devastating problem. Manicured, tender lawns located near water facilities with the lack of predators have become the area of choice for these pesky birds.
It is becoming increasingly evident that Canada geese cannot reside in some of these areas. Their droppings are not only messy but have presented some officials with health concerns. During nesting, the birds become very aggressive and threaten humans. Reports have indicated that people have fallen and have broken limbs due to severe attacks from male geese. Lawsuits have been reported when geese have collided with aircraft, and caused injury, damage, or death.
Millions of dollars are lost each year to grass reduction, and clean up costs can reach unrealistic amounts – not to mention the health hazards related to the droppings on land and in the water. Parks and beaches have lost entire recreational seasons to the birds setting up residence along the shore. Something must be done to get rid of the Canada geese!
The dog, like a fox or wolf, is a true predator of the goose, so we introduce this domesticated predator back into the goose’s environment. The geese cannot discern between the controlled predator and that of the wild animal. All they know is that their safe haven is now invaded by the enemy. This concept of the predator/prey relationship has been around since the beginning of time. It is only natural that Canada geese would be frightened by the presence of a dog because they are a true threat to them and their young.
Sticking close to nature with the predator/prey relationship yet inhibiting the actual capture of the geese is the method of choice used by Goose Masters. As Anne Washington, executive director of the Lake Elsinore Animal Friends wrote to the owners of Max, a Border Collie that was trained by Kent Kuykendall:
“Our society must find a way to exist with all forms of life instead of destroying everything that is deemed a nuisance or inconvenience. Your approach to this situation shows great courage and compassion.”
Border Collies are safe and effective. They possess some unique characteristics that make them the most superior of the herding and hunting breeds of dogs. Unlike other herding breeds that do a lot of barking and move along with rapid bounding movements, the Border Collie is a quiet worker that uses its eye and a stalking manner to persuade the geese to move along. It is that stare that unnerves the birds into flight.
Other breeds are an annoyance to geese, but are not a threat. A common dog walking along a pond or lake has very little bearing on the birds and they will continue grazing along the banks or feeding in the water. When a Border Collie comes to the scene, however, the squawking starts and movement begins. You can compare this to a lioness on the plains of Africa. While the lioness has her tail raised and is casually walking along, the prey animals continue grazing. But the moment that lioness drops her tail and starts the similar stalk-like approach, the prey animals start to stampede!
No other breed of dog possesses the trait we call the “eye” of the Border Collie. A retriever may seem a likely choice as they are grand swimmers, but as the name indicates, a retriever likes and is rewarded by the act of retrieving. When that is taken away from them, their desire to go out disappears. The Border Collie is thrilled by the mere opportunity to stalk.
As explained earlier, only the Border Collie has the “eye” of a wolf and the instinct to determinedly “work” or stalk the Canada geese instead of attacking them. The geese tire of being pestered and simply choose to move to another place in order to find a safer haven.
We are firm believers that there is no better method of controlling geese than the use of a well-trained Border Collie and handler.
We realize there’s a whole array of alternative goose dispersal methods – from laser lights, goose repellents and sonic sound systems to electric fencing, fake predators, motion sensory squirt gun, and nets over ponds and lakes – but we know that these methods are (at best) only temporary measures because our customers have tried them all before calling Goose Masters to “finally, positively” get the Canada geese to move along.
It can vary, depending upon the size of your property and the degree of infestation. But our dogs work quickly and you will be surprised at how soon you can see positive results.
Contact Goose Masters to survey your property for a more accurate estimate.
Of course you can! Many owners of golf courses, municipal parks, and corporate properties have discovered they can resolve their geese problem with a dog of their own. We breed, raise and train our own goose dogs from the best Border Collie stock around. Check out our other web site, Kuykendall's Border Collies, to learn more.