George Looks to Get the Upper Honk on Problem Geese in Local Open Spaces

By Seth Daniel

Resisting all references to the silly geese, Councilor Anissa Essaibi George is preparing to introduce an order at the City Council next month to investigate ways to rid the City’s parks and open spaces of a growing and aggressive population of geese.

George said it’s a little comical and most people grin when she tells them she is planning to take on the issue, but in all seriousness, geese have caused major damage to parks and open spaces in the City, such as the Public Gardens, the Boston Common, Franklin Park, Ramsey Park, the Fens, the Northeastern fields and smaller areas like Blackstone and Franklin Squares in the South End.

Not only that, they have been known to become aggressive at times with small children and small dogs too.

“We want people to use our parks, but when we’ve got a population of geese that are destroying our parks, it makes it difficult for residents to use the parks and for the City to maintain the parks,” she said. “We need to take a hard look at this issue because it has become rather serious.”

George said she plans to file the order at the Aug. 3 City Council meeting and will call for a hearing soon after.

She said she has already begun to study the issue and noted there are some interesting tactics used by other cities around the country to curb the geese. She said there is a certain breed of dog that can be used to scare the geese away so that they don’t return.

“That would be a service provided by the city to control the population,” she said. “That’s one option.”

Overall, the goal would be to get the geese to leave the large parks and open spaces and not to nest there either.

“My goal is really just to get rid of them,” she said, noting that they are protected and so care has to be taken in the tactics used. “I don’t have an appetite for geese in the City of Boston. We’ll want to hear from people who want to get rid of the geese and we’ll want to hear from advocates of the geese. I want to hear all sides because maybe my opinion could change. Right now, I would simply like them to be out of our parks.”


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