Hunt but one way to control geese numbers

Waterfowl hunters will have three chances to participate in a goose hunt within the Alpena city limits in September.

City Building Official Don Gilmet told the Municipal Council earlier this week that, because of higher number of geese in the city this summer, staff had decided to host three hunts this year on Sept. 3, 10 and 17.

While we support the hunt as one way of managing the geese numbers locally, it should be noted that Councilwoman Cindy Johnson voted no on the hunt. She told the council her vote simply was because she believed there could be more humane ways to reduce the numbers, rather than using firearms within the city limits.

Certainly, her point is worthy of future discussion, and staff should consider all possible options.

Gilmet explained later that, usually, the city also collects eggs in the spring, but that was not done this year because of coronavirus concerns.

He said that, previously, that method also was quite helpful in managing sustainable levels of geese in the city.

The geese are an important part of the Up North experience. It doesn’t take long, though, for a population to grow to nuisance levels, and, when that occurs, it makes that Up North experience a disappointing one rather than an enjoyable one.

For that reason, the hunts have become necessary this time of the year.



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