"Having attempted various non-lethal methods of managing the Canada goose population at Summit Lake State Park with little success, the Indiana Department of Natural Resources has adopted an emergency rule to permit a series of three controlled “reductions” to decrease the goose population, starting in September.
According to the DNR, “Large amounts of goose waste on Summit Lake’s beach, in the picnic areas and in bank-fishing locations have raised health concerns, adversely affected visitor enjoyment and resulted in increased operating costs.”
Thus far, the DNR has tried to reduce the goose population by using special noisemakers, shooting blanks and with regular, high-decibel distress calls. They have also used a special federal permit to apply oil to eggs during nesting season to keep them from hatching. Other methods have included spraying grass with a commercial non-palatable chemical and using physical barriers to attempt to keep these birds out of certain areas.
So now they’re asking Indiana hunters to help. On three occasions this fall, hunters are being invited to the park to shoot and kill the geese without the normal hunting restrictions.
According to the DNR, “The dates chosen coincide with hunting seasons to optimize effectiveness and take into consideration local flight patterns and goose behavior.”
The first big shoots will take place Sept. 6, 11 and 13. The second and third rounds of shooting are tentatively set for Dec. 1 and 2, 2007, and Jan. 5 and 6, 2008, pending release of 2007-’08 waterfowl season information by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
Hunters who want to participate in the September reductions must complete an online application by midnight, Aug. 10. Applications will be entered in a random drawing. To apply: www.IndianaOutdoor.in.gov.