LIMA — The battle lines have been drawn, and for now, the city of Lima seems to be winning the war against the aggressive goose invaders.
Public Works Director Howard Elstro gave an update on the city’s efforts to deal with the gaggles of geese that have been leaving excrement on city park walkways and acting aggressively toward walkers and cyclists during Mayor David Berger’s weekly news conference Wednesday.
“We want to express our appreciation and acknowledgement to so many people who have been calling us, both thanking us for addressing this problem of geese and geese droppings throughout the Ottawa River walk and on playing fields, and acknowledge and thank all those who have volunteered their time and services to help us get control of this problem,” Elstro said. “We have had calls from people who have been interested in assisting us with the harassment, control and even hunting.”
Elstro said the flocks have greatly reduced throughout the city, citing harassment efforts as part of the reason.
“Our rangers will continue to harass any goose flocks that will continue to reside here during the fall,” he said.
Part of that harassment is in the form of gunshots aimed at scaring the geese. Elstro emphasized, however, that these are blanks that are being shot, posing no risk to the geese themselves.
“It doesn’t take too long for these geese to associate the sound and the threat with either the uniform or the ranger vehicle,” he said. “So what we’re finding is that we do this a little bit and even driving the vehicle close to the flock will drive them off.”
Elstro is continuing to call for volunteers to help with driving the geese away, both this fall and in the coming spring. They are not pursuing a hunting option at this time, but the department is saving the names and contact numbers of those offering to hunt the geese with the intent of possibly pursuing that option should the flocks increase and the Ohio Department of Natural Resources gives the green light to hunt them.
Reach Craig Kelly at 567-242-0390 or on Twitter @Lima_CKelly.