N.J. farmers take aim at influx of Canada geese

 Canada geese flock to the fields. (Image courtesy of the New Jersey Farm Bureau)

Canada geese flock to the fields. (Image courtesy of the New Jersey Farm Bureau)

Warmer weather is making a dent in some of that snowy buildup. While many are delighted that it’s starting to melt away, some New Jersey farmers are worried about what comes next.

As the snow cover recedes, hundreds of Canada geese are flocking to fields and tearing up over-wintering crops, said Peter Furey, executive director of the New Jersey Farm Bureau.

“The farmers sometimes shrug their shoulder and say it’s nothing they can do much about, but we’re forecasting grain prices, for example, for the next several years to remain rather flat,” he said. “And these losses to wildlife could make a big difference in their bottom line.”

The geese are capable of ruining thousands of dollars worth of crops, Furey said.

The Farm Bureau has been documenting the damage in hopes of convincing federal wildlife officials to allow more hunting to reduce the geese population.

“We’re taking pictures and getting that information into the authorities,” he said. “We’re hoping then that there could be additional hunting seasons to bring the population into better balance with the natural food supply.”

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.