Why Keep Geese off Your Lawn?

Geese and Human Illness, Explained

We have spent years talking with customers and developing geese deterrents that answer their questions of “how to get rid of geese?” and “how to keep geese off my lawn?”. We though that it would make sense to take a step back and discuss why doing so is important. After all, they can be pretty and fun to watch. Why get rid of geese? While there are many answers, perhaps the most obvious one is the diseases and illnesses that Geese can carry.

Geese are known to be filthy animals for a reason: each goose leaves 2-4 pounds of droppings each day, with each dropping containing 25 times the amount of fecal bacteria as human waste. Compound this with the fact that geese travel and stay in flocks/gaggles, the issue of geese waste is never a small concern. Here’s some quick math: 30 geese on a property leave 3 pounds per day, equally 90 pounds of feces EVERY DAY. Now there’s a motivating reason to keep geese off your lawn.

Studies have confirmed the presence of bacteria, parasites and human pathogens in goose feces, so presence of feces in water or on ground where humans may contact them is a very legitimate health concern. The following outlines the threat that the geese present through the spread of bacteria, parasites and human pathogens in their feces. In other words, here is the science that illustrates why you should let us help you keep geese off your lawn:

  • Escherichia coli (E.Coli) bacteria contamination is common in ponds and beaches. Though small amounts are normal in the intestinal track of people, several cases are documented annually in which children succumb to severe diarrhea and kidney damage due to high levels of E. Coli in ponds and beaches.
  • Salmonellae bacteria have been found during multiple studies in the feces of Geese, and potential transmission to people is an important factor to protect against, as these bacteria are often implicated in food poisoning cases in the U.S., and can survive in the outside environment for nine months.
  • Listeria spp. bacteria has been found in domestic Geese feces. Some types of Listeria are able to survive in the outside environment for more than two years in animal feces.
  • Campylobacter spp. bacteria, which causes acute diarrhea in humans, were shown present in 5% of samples of Geese in one study.
  • Geese have been found to transport the parasite Cryptosporidium and in studies this parasite has been found present at a high rate of Geese fecal samples that were gathered in studies. Cryptosporidium parvum is pathogenic to humans (though not to birds), and can be transmitted to people through contamination of drinking water.
  • Giardia spp. has been found in Geese feces in studies, though no transmission of this parasite from Geese to people has been documented.
  • Avian Flu (common name for Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza) was documented in a Goose as recently as Summer of 2015, and is a human pathogen, and can be deadly when spread to people. In 1997 there were 18 documented human cases and 6 resulting deaths in Hong Kong.
  • Chlamydia psittaci was found at a high rate in Geese feces when sampled, which is very significant as this pathogen is a serious threat to human health; infection starts with flu-like symptoms and progresses to life-threatening pneumonia.

The risk of illness is serious. Let us help you get rid of geese, and prevent geese from being a threat on your property.