Off-leash dogs could be solution to Vernon's goose poop problem - InfoNews

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Off-leash dogs could be solution to Vernon's goose poop problem

March 25, 2019 - 1:19 PM

VERNON - Allowing dogs to run off leash at Vernon's parks and beaches could be an inexpensive and humane solution to the chronic problem of goose poop on the city's recreation areas.

The idea outlined in a letter going to Vernon city council today, March 25, would allow dog owners, at certain times, let their dogs run free at the city's beaches and parks in the hope the dogs would become a deterrent, and encourage the geese to settle elsewhere.

Vernon residents David Bissett and Catherine Cookson wrote to council on March 2 saying last summer they tried to take their granddaughter to Kin Beach, but both the playground and the beach were unusable because of geese excrement. They then went to Kal Lake Park and found the same issue.

"This is a sad testimony for the use of a public park facility. Something has to be done so the geese don't overtake the park and make it unusable," they say in their letter.

They also propose a solution.

Based on a similar project the couple saw in Maine where dogs were allowed off-leash at certain times in an effort to control the geese population. Dogs still had to be under control at all times and owners have to pick up after their dogs.

"If dogs were constantly present over time, this would be an effective inexpensive and humane solution for encouraging the geese to settle somewhere else," the letter explains.

City council will consider a staff recommendation to look into the proposed solution and report back with their findings.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Ben Bulmer or call (250) 309-5230 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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