Sharing Campus with Geese

Geese icons on blue background. Reads: Sharing campus with geese

Geese are most prevalent on Western’s campus during the spring to fall seasons and are attracted to Western’s campus as a result of the abundance of food sources, attractive nesting areas and the absence of predators.

Geese begin nesting and mating in the early spring months and as a result, population sizes increase during this time. In the Fall, geese populations are foraging and preparing for migration which results in increased goose droppings during this time. Some geese populations do not migrate and can be seen year-round, commonly referred to as ‘resident’ geese.

Canada Geese are protected under Canadian law by the Migratory Birds Convention Act, 1994.

Safety tips to reduce conflict with Canada Geese:

Keep a safe distance
  • Keep a safe distance from geese and their nesting sites at all times
  • Geese are very protective of their nests and mates, and will attack when they feel threatened
  • Geese may use hissing or honking as a warning sign that you are too close
  • Back away immediately if a goose begins to approach you, especially if their head is down and neck outstretched
  • Avoid turning your back to the goose if you can help it and watch your step as you back away
Do not feed geese
  • People food can make them sick and cause problems with their growing bones and feathers
  • Geese may become dependent on artificial and unreliable food supplies and may demonstrate aggressive behaviour if they associate humans with food
  • Feeding can attract more birds to an area resulting in overpopulation. It also tends to attract predators of geese such as raccoons or opossums

Report a concern or a nesting site on campus

Identifying a concern will help to promote the safety of geese and the campus community. When areas of conflict are reported Facilities Management may employ strategies to reduce human and goose conflict which include:

  • Adding signage to areas where geese are nesting in close proximity to pedestrian pathways or vehicles
  • Erecting temporary barriers to separate nesting sites and human traffic

Report an issue: 

Quick reporting tool: Please take a moment to report to FM areas of issue or concern with Canada Geese

Additional resources