VIDEO: New Canaan Sees Progress in Canada Geese Egg-Oiling


New Canaan officials say they’re seeing fewer Canada geese laying eggs here, since putting into practice a Human Society of the United States-approved method of controlling the local population of what some consider nuisance birds.

For about three years straight, the New Canaan Police Department’s Animal Control unit has seen seven nests in the area of the Lakeview Cemetery and Transfer Station, and this year it’s down to four.

Animal Control Officer Maryann Kleinschmitt said the reason is because she and her volunteer helper, Gail Overbeck, have been “oiling” the geese eggs.

The method—which requires a permit from New Canaan’s Inland Wetlands Department—involves coating the eggs with oil to seal them off, which means they won’t hatch. The message the mother goose gets is: This isn’t a good place to reproduce, so we’ll go elsewhere next time. (Prior to egg-oiling rising as the method of choice, about one decade ago, many municipalities with help from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, rounded up Canada geese with net guns and gassed them to death—an ineffective method, among other things.)

Here’s a video from the Transfer Station area from this week that shows Kleinschmitt and Overbeck in action (article continues below):

Canada Geese Egg Oiling in New Canaan, April 2014

Uploaded by Michael Dinan on 2014-04-25.

New Canaan’s Parks Department handles Mill and Mead Parks.

Kleinschmitt said she was shocked to see Canada geese laying eggs so early this year—nearly a full month sooner than they did last year.

“We have been oiling the eggs and we have been able to keep down the population here, as well as enforcing the town ordinance on not feeding the geese,” she said.

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