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“Did you know, and I swear this is true, that a goose poops a pound a day? That means that every week, with just five geese, we will have 35 pounds of goose poop in the park. You do the math and calculate how much poop that is before the snow melts.” I make it a point never to do math in public, but point taken: geese are a health hazard. For Green Island [New York] Village Mayor Ellen McNulty-Ryan, it’s more than that. It’s personal . . .

“The mayor said she’s been on a crusade against the geese since she became mayor 12 years ago,” timesunion.com reports. “Her efforts intensified in the last decade after she suffered a serious intestinal illness from ingesting dust from sweeping up dried goose droppings.”

And so, Mayor McNulty-Ryan regularly takes a gun of some sort – an unnamed firearm that “discharges a pyrotechnic cartridge that explodes in the air and makes a noise” – and shoots it near the geese. The ballistic FOAD seems to have done the trick for over a decade.

Only now the local school is miffed as hell and not going to take it any more.

The gun blasts alarmed staff members and students at the Heatly School, its small public school for students in kindergarten through 12th grade. The most recent incident prompted Principal Erin Peteani to send the mayor an email asking her to stop shooting the gun during school hours . . .

Green Island Union Free School District Superintendent Michael Mugits said Ryan shot the gun near school grounds. Ryan said she was shooting from the street. Many times in the past, Ryan has said she shoots the gun in River Park that is next to the school near the Hudson River.

The parties involved describe this as a misunderstanding. Both the Mayor and the school see pooping geese as a problem. The educators just deal with it in a kindler gentler way; using cutouts of dogs and fluttering reflective tape on the property. Which doesn’t work, apparently.

Call me crazy, but how about doing something that would result in dead geese (shotgun hunting away from the school?), and inviting the entire village to an annual goosefest? Who doesn’t love confit? Meanwhile, is the Mayor’s long gun approach even legal?

It’s unclear if the gun is considered a firearm under state or federal laws, which prohibit carrying a weapon, including a starter pistol, in a school zone. State law prohibits the discharge of a firearm within 500 feet of a building.

So I guess a “gun free zone” around a school is also a “free goose” zone. Free as in free to wander. Not free to take and eat. More’s the pity . . .

61 Responses to NY Mayor in Hot Water for Anti-Goose Gun

  1. “It’s unclear if the gun is considered a firearm under state or federal laws, which prohibit carrying a weapon, including a starter pistol, in a school zone. State law prohibits the discharge of a firearm within 500 feet of a building.”

    What’s unclear about this? If a starter pistol which “discharges a pyrotechnic cartridge” without a bullet is a prohibited weapon, then this “un-named firearms” which “discharges a pyrotechnic cartridge that ***explodes in the air*** and makes a noise” would certainly be a prohibited weapon as well. The mayor is now a felon!

  2. the endangered species list should be ripped up today. 99% of animals on the list ARE NOT ENDANGERED!

    • Canadian geese are classified LC, which means the following:

      “A least concern (LC) species is one which has been categorized by the International Union for Conservation of Nature as evaluated but not qualified for any other category. As such they do not qualify as threatened, near threatened, or (prior to 2001) conservation dependent.

      Species cannot be assigned the Least Concern category unless they have had their population status evaluated. That is, adequate information is needed to make a direct, or indirect, assessment of its risk of extinction based on its distribution and/or population status.”

      In other words, their population has been evaluated, and they are not endangered. They are not covered under the ESA. What they ARE covered under is the Federal Migratory Bird Act of 1918.

      • Canada geese, not Canadian geese.
        They aren’t citizens of Canada, just transient, avian rats.

      • Correct on the Canada Goose being subject to Federal law.

        Please see http://www.fws.gov/forms/3-200-13.pdf which discusses in detail how Canada Goose nests and eggs may be destroyed by landowners under certain conditions. The rules are very detailed and an annual report needs to be filed, but it can be done.

  3. What a bunch of boobs. Orchards use propane powered guns to scare away birds. Yes, even the orchards that are close to Schools..

  4. hmmm. The Mayor really needs to learn about these things called silencers, which will enable permanent removal of the offenders.

    Geese here in MD are a dirty nuisance, and in Central MD there are very few places to hunt them.

  5. Everyone I’ve talked to says the best way to cook a goose is to wrap it in bacon, throw it on the grill and cook it till the bacon is nice and crispy and perfectly cooked. Take the bacon off, throw the goose to the dogs and eat the bacon.

    • I just cooked some wild goose breast last week. Brined it for 24 hours in a brine that I’d call “pastrami-like,” grilled it medium-rare. It’s quite good. I also used one breast and put it in the smoker (after leaving it in the freezer for a couple hours so it was stiff enough to cut nice and thin against the grain) and made it into jerky, which was good. At that point, after the brining and smoking into jerky, it really could not be distinguished from beef jerky…

  6. Bird-bomb shells are pretty effective on all sorts of critters and are quite the crowd pleasers… I think ammo-to-go still sells them but not sure…

    • I’ve got a couple of boxes of those bird bombs… They fit great in a fired and primed 20 gauge shell and launched up in the air out of a shotgun. Just a click and a smoke trail, then a boom. She’s probably using the little .22 cap gun that flings them about 20 feet before they blow up. Pretty effective. Which means they’d be banned everywhere that’s run by liberals.

  7. My god.. now they can’t even tolerate geese. Such intolerant weirdos.

    Looking at these ridiculous photos:
    http://www.timesunion.com/tuplus-local/article/Green-Island-mayor-shoots-loud-wildlife-gun-near-6277418.php#photo-8019709

    with signs like:
    -Park curfews
    -No glass allowed?? WTF
    -No dogs allowed
    -Drug free school zone. Seriously? You actually need that sign? Does it work?

    The name of this article should be: Anti-gun, anti-hunting intolerant socialists meet reality and attempt to control it.

    They should just put up a sign that says – “No Geese Allowed.” That should fix the problem.

    I like to see geese in the park. It’s a park. If they don’t want geese I suppose they could drain the water out of the ponds and fill them with concrete.

    • Have you seen what Canada Geese do to a park? They eat every blade of grass to its roots and poop everywhere. I don’t mind geese but over the last few years they have multiplied to the point where it is impossible to even walk anywhere they decide to be.
      In our Industrial Park there are numerous man made lakes. The association hired a person that chases them with an RC boat. Prevents them from nesting and hopefully discourages them from returning next year.

      • Eating them will deter them from returning next year, also. The cheapest solution consists of one 12-guage shell per birdie. Right across the cove from my house is a small city which has had a deer problem for 30 years now, residents regularly feed them, resulting in a whole lot. Around 20 years ago the thought was to shoot them (duh) but some people raised such a stink they changed to trapping them and sending them elsewhere. Whoa, now the place they are to be sent has to promise they will never be hunted. Good grief. I can’t imagine the cost, but that was the decision, nothing else changed. MUCH better! Of course, 10 years later the numbers were right back up again. Obviously, we’ll just do the same thing again, right? Nope, the fools who agreed to take hundreds of deer and not allow them to be hunted have learned the error of their ways, they now have plenty of deer, thank you very much. The city did come up with some solution (I don’t follow their shenanigans any more than is unavoidable), and now we’re back to the same numbers again. I have a herd of around 15 wandering around our neighborhood which used to be 4. One is around 10-prong buck. If I were a hunter, I would have thinned them long ago, since I am not inside city limits, especially now with a silencer in the bargain.

        • Time to get a hunting license and stamp. Now you can enjoy the joys of hunting, the anti hunter, the anti gunner, the save the deer foundation (so Bambi can die of black tongue disease instead)

  8. I wish bow hunting geese was legal in town in the twin cities area. There’s an insane amount of them and they literally disregard humans since they know they’re protected. The state does have a 3 bird limit per day here due to the insane amount, but it really does nothing to disturb the insane amount within the suburbs themselves.

      • It’s pretty simple. If an animal is allowed human interaction without consequence it will assess future situations as such. The deer on my old college campus were the same way, and the same problem happens when people feed bears.

        • I think the mayor should get a crossbow and kill the geese. Dead geese poop a lot less.

  9. Open a few Chinese restaurants nearby. Goose population will plummet and pressed duck will be the house specialty.

  10. Single cylinder motorcycles, e.g. a Kawasaki KLR650 dual-sport, scare the bejeezus out of these things. It’s fun to coast at idle up to a group of them, then gun the engine. Perhaps they think it sounds like a big predator’s wings? Don’t know, don’t care, it’s fun and it works.

    And if they waddle away across the grass, well, you’re on a dual-sport and can chase them until they decide to take off.

  11. A friend of mine used to shoot many Canada geese on his marsh property in Gloucester, MA. With a fish fillet knife, you make an incision and cut out just the breast meat, and throw the rest of the bird away. Marinate the breasts in dry red wine, garlic and rosemary in the fridge overnight, then wrap the breasts in bacon and cook under the broiler. Rare. Fantastic!

      • Let’s just say it doesn’t exactly taste like chicken.
        Even the breast needs and infusion of bacon grease to become edible.

        • I love that Mexican dude that says, “I don’t always talk to vegetarians, but when I do, it’s with a mouth full of beacon”

  12. They are so brazen and plentiful where I live (NC) that even with a dog they allow me to get within pretty easy handgun range. Too bad it’s in a subdivision and is illegal to take care of the problem. I am not a hunter but I would advocate a 1 day national hunt to thin the flock down to a manageable size. I would help cook them.

  13. I’ve owned German Shepherd Dogs that crapped less than Canada geese. And if you’re caught out in the open when those horizontal manure bombers are flying overhead, you’ll want to shoot every single one of them.

  14. Tripwires work well at keeping geese away. Just have the wire ~6in off the ground at any access point to water the geese would find convenient. Most geese will find someplace else to hang out rather than flyhop over it repeatedly. They are THAT lazy.

  15. Oh no. Someone’s “alarmed.” Better pass more laws while we’re at it.

    I mean, we could do some “educating” and reduce the alarm but… what do we look like, teachers?!?

  16. I suppose there might be some gun experts at the Watervliet Arsenal, just a mile south of Green Island, who could be of assistance although it specializes in “larger” calibers.

  17. I have a hilarious memory of my 1st wife on our honeymoon. We were at Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago and a giant canada goose stalked her and landed on her back biting her. I guess he smelled her(she was pregnant). I knew not to hit the thing and chased it away from the hysterical wife. Maybe my best memory of my oldest kids mother…geese are nasty.

  18. Back when I lived in Anchorage, the local sea plane base called Lake hood had a goose and seagull problem. The base was a couple of lakes connected by two water runway/taxiways, with a long slim island between them. The birds nesting there became a flight hazard. I guess they got tired of shooing them away constantly. So their solution was to lease a a couple of pigs from a local farm and turn them loose on the island with a little pig shelter. The pigs would raid any nest and eat all the eggs. Pretty soon, no more geese.

    Funny thing was, nobody realized pigs could swim, and they kept swimming back to the mainland. They ended up putting invisible fence collars on them to keep them on the little island.

    • By the way, if anyone knows what the hell this is, please enlighten me as this has stumped me for years. They used to stock that seaplane base in Anchorage with some kind of tiny red water bug or algae that moved in reddish clouds and would EAT any gasoline or oil that got spilled in the water. Used to creep me out and amaze me. I worked on the dock at a floatplane operator and any time gas or oil dripped in the water and made a little slick, a reddish, moving algae-type cloud in the water would come up to the slick and eat it, leaving just an inert saran-wrap like film behind when they were done, which you could scoop out in one peace with a stick. And this all took just a minute or two. The boss there said it was a secret military invention they made to release in enemy oil fields, but I got a strong BS vibe from that story. He was known to tell tall tales. Still, I have never been able to identify what it was by searching online, so I have to wonder…

  19. I manage a large industrial facility. We used to have hundreds of geese. Now I chase them off the property three times a week using a golf cart. Now if I have one or two, that is a lot.

    Geese get geese. If you keep them off the property, no more geese will land.

  20. Not all pyrotechnics are shot gun launched. originalshellcracker.com

    Some can be launched from starter pistol like launchers. http://reedjoseph.com/pyrotechnics.htm

    The best way to deal with them in this type of setting is to get a border collie and just cut it loose to act on its instinct to herd.

    Other large dogs such as labs can be trained to attack rather than just herd but the whole using a “natural” technique line can calm down the bleeding heart animal lover contingent.

  21. We had geese on campus in Indiana. All the “They’re so pretty!” faction people fought every effort to control them — until one attacked a little girl in a second-grade class visiting the lake. They’d attacked adults before, but that was always blamed on the humans. An attack on a little girl got “serious discussions” going….

    One of the groundskeepers decided not to wait for discussions, as he had a little girl of his own. He took to parking his riding mower by the lake for lunch, where geese were known to steal sandwiches right from people’s hands and eat bag and contents along with bits of finger. He also took to keeping the razor-sharp machete he used for minor shrub trimming in a scabbard on his back.

    Two headless geese later, the “discussions” went into high gear. The solution was to allow grounds people on their vehicles to charge the geese at random.

    Shortly thereafter came a complaint from the city, because the geese had relocated to one of their lakes….

  22. Lol this topic is so full of fail stories by animal lovers. They don’t want to kill animals but then they complain when they get used to humans and start making problems.

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