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Canadian Geese Repellent : Harassment & Deterrence Tips

Canadian Geese have been around the United States since 1930 when they were introduced to Pennsylvania. They have undergone a huge increase in numbers since then and are both enjoyed and annoying. Resident Canadas are different from the migratory Canada geese in size. The resident Canadian is about twice as heavy and stays year round. They become problems to pond owners and those living along rivers as they leave behind a huge amount of feces and feathers. What will work as a Canadian goose repellent?

Active and passive techniques to repel the Canadian goose

If you have been feeding and have allowed the Canadian geese to raise their young on your property you are giving them a lot of positive reinforcement. If now their numbers have gotten to a point where their presence is not such a welcome thing; you have to start using negative reinforcements to encourage them to leave.

If there is a pond in your neighborhood that several homes are located around and it has become a nuisance for the Canadian Geese to live there; you will have to work together to try and encourage the geese to leave. If you have even one homeowner still providing food to them; your efforts will be worthless.

A lot of different goose harassment techniques have been tried over the years to repel the Canadian goose. Some have good success, others have made no difference. These are some techniques that have been tried:

Scare tactics

There are mixed opinions on whether or not scare tactics work to repel the Canadian geese. Some devices that have been installed in their area to try and scare them out are:

  • Balloons filled with helium and painted with four eye spots to be visible from all sides. There have been mixed results with the balloon idea. Some claim it works great, others say their geese paid them no attention.
  • Plastic streamers made from reflective Mylar. These have had very good results in scaring the geese away.
  • Scarecrows and other decoys. The size of the decoy is not as important as having it move if a breeze.
  • Hawk and owl decoys. These have to be moved often as when left in the same spot the geese become accustomed to them and they have no effect.

Noise makers

In neighborhoods all parties must be acceptable to the idea of using noise makers.as the sound the geese hear will also be heard by the property owners. Some of the noises used are shell crackers, tracers, screamers and other projectiles which are fired from guns. These will of course be quite loud and may even require a permit in order to use. There are also devices available in stores that emit random distressed geese calls varied with cries of predators which have been effective.


There are companies that help residents control geese populations by hiring out trained border collies to chase geese away. Dogs living around the area where geese have become a problem may be encouraged to chase geese, but have less success than those specially trained for the task.

Change the habitat

The geese love it when you mow the grass down to the pond; this is an ideal situation for them. The pond provides them a safety zone and the mowed lawn gives them plenty of food along with a clear view of any approaching danger. Find a way to repel the geese while maintaining an attractive area:

  1. Fences can be very effective at keeping geese out of an area. The geese much prefer walking into and out of the water so the fence discourages them from staying by a body of water that is fenced. There are many different types of fencing available; a little research will find you one that works with everyone using the water.
  2. Vegetation will discourage the geese from using your area. The vegetation would be danger zones to the geese as there could be a predator hiding among it. With a natural buffer between the mowed areas and the water you will exploit the natural fear geese have of danger spots.
  3. Change the availability of foods for the geese to find. Kentucky bluegrass is a favorite and it should not be planted near ponds. There are other grass choices that the geese will not find as favorable. Geese have shown a great dislike to common periwinkle and English Ivy.
  4. Repellents are available to apply on areas the geese feed on. The most popular chemical repellent is, Methl-Anthranilate containing a chemical naturally found in grapes and citrus fruits which will repel geese from feeding where it is applied.

The Canadian geese are protected under federal laws and therefore cannot be destroyed. Use one of these suggested ideas to encourage them to leave your area on their own.

How to Get Rid of Geese

Geese are beautiful birds when they are not over populating your yard or business area leaving behind a foul mess of bird poop, feathers and nesting materials. The reason they typically make your space their home is usually that there is a food source they enjoy dinning on regularly, or the habitat around your area is fitting for their nesting and living needs.

Geese in general have aggressive personalities. If the bird feels threatened, in anyway it may chase you while honking, and if it is able to get close enough to you, they are known to nip and bite, which is another reason why people are searching for methods on how to get rid of them. However, one of those methods cannot be through killing unless you have a license or permit to hunt them. Hunting is only granted when there is an over population of the bird.


What exactly are geese?

Geese are web-footed birds with long necks that weigh between twenty and thirty pounds and can reach up to forty-three inches in length depending on the type. There are three true breeds of geese. Those geese breeds are the Anser, Grey Geese and the domestic geese that live on farms. The birds typically live on average for twenty-five years and have a diet that consist of grain, seeds, small reptiles, amphibians, insects and sometimes fruits. Their habitat is generally around any body of water such as ponds and lakes where they are close enough to land for a mother goose to lay eggs during nesting season. The way these birds find their mate and communicate with one another is by honking away. They also honk in hopes to scare off their predators, which are foxes, owls, raccoons, wolves and coyotes.

What are some of the ways you can repel geese away?

Repelling geese away from a particular location if they are becoming over populated can be difficult since geese love going back home to their birthplace. If many geese were born in one particular location at the same time, each year the geese will go back to that same spot when warmer weather arrives. After all, these birds are ones that migrate to warmer areas of the world when temperatures get cold and seasons start changing to autumn and winter. With that said, some of the methods that are known to help repel geese away are:

  • Setting up swan decoys since geese will not nest in the same spot as other birds
  • Growing tall grasses and bushes around your ponds can help deter geese away
  • Place netting around areas you desire to keep the geese away from
  • Spraying methyl anthanilate around your lawn or golf coarse can help repel the birds away
  • Place goose alarms around your property that will go off whenever it senses geese using motion sensor technology
  • Place fencing around water areas of your landscape
  • Leave signs that tell people not to feed the geese while near your home or business area
  • Make sure all trash bags and cans are sealed up tight with lids to prevent geese from feasting and nesting due to food sources
  • Get a herding dog that is trained to carefully herd the geese away such as a border collie
  • Using loud horns to scare them away

Another way people prevent geese from invading their space is by finding the goose nest and physically removing it along with the eggs in it, but this is not recommend since geese do play a role in our eco-system. That role is to distribute seeds in other areas of the world near bodies of water to keep the aquatic plant life alive and thriving. One more reason why it is not wise to remove a goose nest is that it is cruel to take babies away from their mother.

However, if you have domestic geese, which are for, laying purposes it is perfectly okay to use the eggs. Trying to take eggs from a wild geese nest might just cause you to be chased and bitten, which can then result in a hospital visit if the bite is severe enough. If you must move the nest from your property for reasons of safety or simply not wanting the geese there, it is wise to call in fish and game to help do it properly.

Bottom Line of Goose Removal

Again, killing geese and removing nest from your property to help rid them away is not usually an option unless it is hunting season or you are fetching eggs from a domestic goose nest. Otherwise, your options for repelling geese are the ones mentioned above, but if those ones do not work keep on doing research until you find ones that do. Other methods that have been found useful are placing reflectors around your landscape, installing water sprinklers in lawns and gardens to spook the geese away or spraying bobcat or fox urine around the space you wish too prevent them from invading. With that said, geese are in general harmless and beautiful birds to enjoy if they are not being a problem for you.