City of Rochester reviewing geese management options

This comes after the city received multiple complaints about the geese and their droppings.

Posted: Nov. 8, 2018 5:59 PM

ROCHESTER, Minn. – When you’re walking along a path or taking your kids to a playground, it’s not uncommon to see geese. Unfortunately, along with geese comes their droppings.

Many in Rochester aren’t happy with it. The Rochester Parks and Recreation Board is receiving complaints, and are now trying to figure out a solution.

In the parking lot of Silver Lake Park, there’s more geese than there are cars. Lots of geese means lots of droppings. When it comes to the birds, it seems as if people either love them or hate them.

“I don’t like them. They’re nasty,” Barbara Cutcher, of Rochester, said.

“I don’t mind them. I’m OK to coexist with them, but I wish they weren’t in some of the places where especially kids like to play,” Anne Clarkson, of Rochester said, “so like the playgrounds, their poop there grosses me out.”

It’s not necessarily because the geese are around, but what they’re leaving behind. That’s because their waste has a certain kind of bacteria. When found in rivers and lakes they live by, it may show a presence of disease-causing organisms.

“They’re nasty,” Cutcher said. “[You] can’t go swimming at Silver Lake, you miss out on a lot of things out there.”

The city has already gotten lots of complaints about the issue. Now they’re trying to figure out what to do about it.

“Limiting the places where geese can be fed might be a piece of it, or putting up fences around spaces that we want to protect,” Clarkson said, “because I don't feel like I see geese fly over very frequently.”

“I'd like to see them go away,” Cutcher said, “but that's not reality.”

The Rochester Parks and Recreation Board will be talking about the geese problem at their meeting on Nov. 13, which will take place at 4:30 p.m. in the Prairie House at Quarry Hill Park.

At the meeting, the board will talk about humane geese management strategies. No action is expected to be taken at the time. However if increased management activities are recommended by the board, the public will get the chance to make comments at a future meeting.

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