Geese Still Killed in NYC, Just Not at Prospect Park

Prospect Parks remaining goose population

A total of 255 geese from 12 city parks have been rounded up so far by the federal department of agriculture, the city’s department of environmental protection told the Times. The feds hope to round up another 145 geese from two more parks before calling it a summer. (Geese are rounded-up for slaughter in June or July because they’re molting and cannot fly.) For the second year in a row, the city has said it will not round-up the remaining geese in Prospect Park, fewer than 20, compared to two years ago when the feds rounded up 368 geese from the park and gassed them.

The government won’t say which parks have been hit already and which remain to be done because they don’t want activists disrupting their work. The culling is part of a larger program to reduce the Eastern seabord’s Canada goose population by almost half a million. The plan is multipronged: in addition to gassings, the government addles goose eggs to prevent them from hatching.

All of this is done in the name of aviation safety, ever since Captain Sully flew his plane into a flock of geese and had to make an emergency landing in the Hudson River. But one advocate says there’s another way. “The public has been presented with the false choice between saving human lives and protecting wildlife,” the director of GooseWatch NYC said in a statement. “At the end of the day, short of killing every living wild animal, the only way to guarantee protection of human lives is to ensure that airplanes are strong and sturdy, are properly repaired, and can survive a ‘bird strike’ when it does occur, and pilots are alert and aware.”

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