Population Growth and Movements of Canada Geese in New Haven, Connecticut During a 25-Year History
The Waterbird Society
In the last few decades, Canada Geese (Branta canadensis) have become established in metropolitan areas throughout North America. From 1984 through 2009, Canada Geese in New Haven County, Connecticut, were banded as goslings (HY geese) and adults (AHY), and their movements and recruitment into the local breeding population were documented. During this period, the number of Canada Geese increased several fold in Connecticut. Geese were non-migratory; most recoveries (85%) of banded Canada Geese came from Connecticut, and 76% came from New Haven County. Dispersal rates outside of Connecticut peaked during 1990–1994 when 23% of all reported geese were shot outside of the state; more recently (2005–2009) only 3% of reported geese were shot outside 0f Connecticut. The proportion of dispersing geese that moved northward in the Atlantic Flyway has increased in recent years. Similar proportions 0f AHY females (23%) and AHY males (22%) were recruited into the local breeding population. Among HY geese, more females (22%) than males (5%) were recruited because HY males were more likely to disperse out of the county than HY females. Non-migratory populations of geese in metropolitan areas are causing nuisance problems; the restricted movements of these geese indicate that efforts to reduce their populations will have to be conducted at the local level.
Conover, M. R. 2012. Population growth and movements of Canada geese in New Haven, Connecticut during a 25-year history. Waterbirds 34: 412-421.