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City moves forward with expanded hunts to control goose population

Submitted by on August 4, 2020 – 12:30 amNo Comment

For the second time in as many years the city of Alpena will hold three hunts in September to control the number of geese around town.

The total number of hunts was expanded to three in 2019, and each hunt was extended by one hour due to a higher population of birds.

Building official Don Gilmet, who has organized the hunts for the city over the years, says that due to COVID-19 city employees with the department of public works did not perform an annual spring task of collecting and destroying goose eggs from nests. He believes the lack of an egg collection has led to a higher population of birds, which create problems in public areas when they leave their droppings behind.

Gilmet estimates there are 200 to 250 geese in the city. He says that number will grow as fall approaches and early migrating geese from the surrounding area join those that are already in town.

This year’s hunts will be held on the first three Thursdays in September, from daylight to 1 p.m. In addition to Mich-e-ke-wis Park, hunts will be held at the county fairgrounds where geese are said to be making “quite a mess in the camping areas and the bike path along the river.” The total costs of the hunts will be less than $1,000.

A total of 115 geese were harvested during three hunts last year. Some of the harvested birds were donated to less fortunate families.

The hunts were approved by the municipal council Monday, during a bi-monthly meeting.