Last week MWF staff, led by Program & Events Coordinator Chris Benson and Managing Director Carly Deacon, successfully took part in the spring Canada Goose Conservation Season. The spring conservation season provides hunters a unique opportunity to harvest the overabundant Giant Canada Goose population in attempts to bring the populations back to target levels. This season as been implemented through the official designation of the Giant Canada geese as an overabundant population. The increasing number of geese on the land scape has resulted in an annual average of $416,282 in crop damage and $372,528 worth of vehicle collision claims in Manitoba from 2015-2018. While efforts such as increased bag limits have been made in the fall hunting season to try and reduce the Giants growth, the mixing of other populations during the fall migration resulted in a diluted effect on the overabundant population. Using Geo-locator (GPS) leg band data, wildlife biologists have monitored the migration patterns/timing of each populations since 2015/2016. What this data has shown, is that the Giant population enter the province earlier than the other populations which travel through the province during their spring migration. Using this data, the spring conservation season was designated from March 1-31 of this year to specifically target the Giant Canada Geese without effecting the other populations.
While this new season is exciting for those looking to fill their freezer this spring, it also brings about a whole new set of challenges, like how to scout, set up and hunt the spring Canada Goose migration. For those looking for a few tips on how to approach this new season, or if you’re trying to get into Goose hunting for the first time, we hope this video can help answer some of your questions!