Goose hunting: what you need to know

Eric Davis

Mayhood's Sporting Goods

CHENANGO COUNTY With fall coming into full swing, you can definitely see the signs that winter is coming. One of the more noticeable indicators is the influx of Canada geese that are migrating south to avoid the freezing temperatures. Often it seems like it happens overnight, probably because they do migrate in the dark using stars as markers to know what direction to head in. As you drive to work in the morning its as if every cornfield has a blob of geese hanging out.

To coincide with the migration, the hunting season for geese is broken into a couple smaller seasons almost. This gives hunters the opportunity to harvest geese when they are actually around. The information that helps biologists determine the season dates comes from the data taken from band reporting.

Canada geese are fitted with metal bands one or both of their legs during the summer usually and if a hunter harvests a goose with a band, they are encouraged to report their harvest. It is a simple process that only takes a few minutes online with the hunter entering information such as the band number, the date it was harvested, and the closest town or village. With this the United State Geological Survey, the agency that is responsible for all bird banding in the United States, can look at where the bird was banded, how old the bird was when banded, and if it was a male or female (all reported by the bander) and then look at where it was harvested, how long it took before it was harvested, etc.

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