Vernon city council voted to defeat the proposed cull of geese within city limits on Monday, Feb. 24, 2020. (File)

Goose cull a no go in Vernon

Tied vote meant defeat for councillors in favour of the kill program

The goose cull of up to 150 birds in Vernon is a no go after councillors defeated the motion.

Councillors in favour of the kill program proposed by Parks and Public Spaces manager Kendra Kryszak Monday said this was the one option sure to control population numbers.

On the other hand, Councillors Akbal Mund, Kelly Fehr and Mayor Victor Cumming said the alternative options of scare tactics and altering the landscape shouldn’t be skipped without consideration.

Coun. Scott Anderson, who was in favour of the kill program, estimated to cost the city $41,000, said the birds targeted by the proposed method are an invasive species that are not native to the Okanagan Valley and this option is the only way to mitigate the negative impacts of the pesky geese.

Coun. Dalvir Nahal agreed. She said after five years serving Vernon as a councillor, this is the number one issue she hears about from her constituents.

“If we don’t do the cull, then let’s not do the addling program because we’ve been doing it for years and it’s not working and it’s still killing them,” Coun. Nahal said.

Those opposed to the cull, however, said egg addling is working to control geese populations.

Council recently approved the additional spending of $15,000 to expand the egg addling program within city limits on Feb. 10. Councillors also requested administration amend the Animal Control Bylaw to ban wildlife feeding within city limits.

Those bylaw changes will be considered at a later date.

Currently, the city is spending around $35,000 a year to address goose populations through the egg addling program and scare tactics.

The cull proposed by Parks acknowledged this method is often considered unpopular and would likely see an adverse public and media reaction.

In a presentation by wildlife biologist Kate Hagmeier and co-ordinator of the Okanagan Goose Management Program, she said although culls do permanently remove some geese, egg addling would still be required to control populations.

Communities on Vancouver Island have been harvesting birds for the past three years at a cost of around $35,000 annually, Hagmeier said. Each year, more than 500 geese are destroyed.

Coun. Mund returned to this point while voicing his reasoning not to support the kill program. The fact the program was repeated annually underscores its efficacy, or lack thereof.

“Let’s look at alternatives before we move to a cull,” he said.

Mayor Cumming said more discussions need to be had between neighbouring governments, including the Okanagan Indian Band and the Regional District of North Okanagan’s Electoral Area B.

Coun. Kari Gares was not present at the council meeting Feb. 24.

READ MORE: Vernon to add $15K to goose management

READ MORE: Goose cull proposed in Vernon


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Vernon women spending quarantine making masks

Group at Predator Ridge, and a colleague in Vernon, keeping busy making surgical masks for others

Second million-dollar lotto ticket sold in Vernon

Same thing happened on March 7; somebody won Guaranteed Match Number prize

Social media a blessing and a curse during time of crisis: B.C. communication expert

‘In moments of crisis, fear is very real and palpable,’ says SFU’s Peter Chow-White

WATCH: Coldstream producer treats neighbours to live music from safe distance

Neighbours practiced social distancing as Jeff Johnson played songs from his front steps

Sparkling Hill Resort donates produce to Vernon food bank, gloves to hospital

Operating manager says layoffs resulted in spare materials that are much needed amid COVID-19

No plans to call in military right now to enforce COVID-19 quarantine: Trudeau

Trudeau unveils $7.5M for Kids Help Phone, $9M for vulnerable seniors amid COVID-19

QUIZ: How much do you know about the Olympics?

Put your knowledge to the test with these 12 questions

B.C. announces $3M for food banks to increase capacity during COVID-19

It is not clear how much of the money will flow towards Greater Victoria food banks

B.C. is seeing the highest rate of COVID-19 recovery in Canada, and there’s a few reasons why

British Columbia was one of the first to see rise in COVID-19 cases, and has also switched up testing

World COVID-19 update: U.S. expects 100,000 deaths; Oregon declares disaster

Comprehensive update of world news for Sunday, March 19.

No hesitation; two bystanders assist in South Okanagan house fire rescue

“I’d do it for anybody,” says Penticton man after assisting in house fire rescue

Summerland churches go online during COVID-19 pandemic

Livestream services, online support provided to congregations and community

Fur Brigade Trail was transportation route in Okanagan Valley

Transportation corridor passed through Nicola Prairie, now Summerland

RCMP, firefighters rally in support for health care workers in Kelowna

Pandosy Street was packed with supporters Saturday night

Most Read