July 30, 2009

Carl Spackler Gives In; Indiana Course To Hold Goose Hunt

A Rochester, Indiana golf course has been cleared by the city to hold a goose hunt in order to thin a large flock there that is apparently causing a great deal of damage:

Northern Indiana Town Allowing Goose Hunt on Golf Course

"Round Barn Golf Club in Rochester asked the City Council to approve hunting on the course, where golf pro Lyle Lingenfelter says up to 1,000 Canada geese spend the winter.

He told council members he would seek about five people for the hunts, which would take place when the golf course was closed."

A Better Alternative...

Perhaps the course should contact The Geese Police, a New Jersey business owned by David Marcks. Geese Police "patrolmen" are highly trained Border Collies, and they "encourage" geese to relocate elsewhere using non-lethal methods that mimic the natural predators that feed on geese in the wild. By fooling the geese into believing they are being hunted, they quickly decided that the area being cleared is no longer safe and leave permanently.

The Geese Police are highly effective, pose no danger to the public (handlers accompany the dogs) and have no negative environmental impact.

Indeed, Marcks (a former golf course superintendent) and his franchisees are no Carl Spacklers, they are all highly trained, and they knowledgeable
on the behavior of the Canada geese and their habits. The firm also provides public education, and says that they insure "the most successful goose control program available."

Geese Police methods employ techniques which are approved by USDA Wildlife Service and US Fish and Wildlife, the Humane Society and PETA.

That sounds much better than loose bullets flying around on a golf course, not only for folks nearby, but for the animals themselves.


  1. The dogs are very cool and very good at their job, but a dog can only be in one place at a time, and a flock of geese can be all over the place.

    Geese aren't endangered - and they taste good - thinning out the flock isn't such a bad idea now and then.

    I would just ask that they repair their divots and rake the bunkers before they leave. :-)

  2. Funny how animals share our world...sometimes working with with us, entertaining us... sometimes getting in our way... or worse.

    I think dogs hearding geese on a golf course is brilliant.

  3. We have a Border Collie at our course. I love seeing him ride around with the grounds keepers. It's a wonderful idea.

    Although I see court's point. Sometimes thinning is necessary. Have you ever tried to mark your ball in goose poop. It's nasty stuff and certainly not healthy to have accumulated in small areas.

    Our course is experimenting with a goose repellent gel they use around the water. I should ask more about how it works.

  4. Heather - I have seen a couple of courses use simple fishing wire around the edges of water hazards. Apparently geese aren't very bright and can't get out of the water onto the fairway, or into the water from the fairway, so they do one or the other, then leave. Seemed strange, but they said that it works.

    I'm with you - goose poop is nasty and unhealthy. (we usually play it like casual water - free drop from the nearest point of releif...pun intended) :-D


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