Options explored for fowl problem

September 18, 1997


Staff Writer

Hagerstown park officials have heard some citizen proposals to discourage ducks and geese from nesting at City Park, including feed containing birth control, a city official said.

Local attorney Wiley Rutledge presented the Parks Board with a petition last Thursday signed by 1,093 people who were opposed to proposals to ban feeding or shake eggs, said Department of Public Works officials.

Public Works Manager Doug Stull has said there are too many ducks and Canada geese at the park. The more than 300 geese are destroying the soil area and ripping plants out, he has said.


Two options included banning feed and shaking goose eggs to prevent them from hatching, according to Stull.

When those ideas were proposed three years ago, 6,500 residents petitioned the city's mayor and City Council not to go along with the plan, including Rutledge.

Rutledge's alternatives included treating feed with birth control or allowing dogs to be walked in the park to discourage the waterfowl from nesting there, said Stull and Sharon Smith, Rutledge's co-worker.

Rutledge could not be reached for comment on Wednesday.

Stull said the park board will consider Rutledge's proposals during its 5 p.m. meeting on Thursday, Oct. 9, at 51 W. Memorial Blvd.

Stull said he expected the board to have a recommendation for the City Council in November or December.

No changes would be made before next spring when waterfowl start nesting, he said.

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