Lawn & Garden Wildlife

How to Get Rid of Geese

Learn easy, humane ways to repel Canada geese from your property — and keep them away!
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Canada geese are fascinating birds to watch at a lake or pond. They have a wingspan of up to 6 feet and may weigh as much as 14 pounds. However, Canada geese in your yard are not as delightfully fascinating. Geese leave droppings all over grass and walkways. In addition to being unsightly and unpleasant to step in, these droppings can contaminate gardens, fountains, and other areas of a yard. Due to their large size, geese can even knock over smaller pets or children and may become aggressive if they feel threatened.

If you’re wondering “how long do geese live?” and hoping your goose problem will disappear on its own soon, you probably won’t be happy to hear that most geese live at least 10 years, but some can live for more than 100 years. So, the goose problem in your yard isn’t just going to go away on its own. Continue reading to discover some of the best ways to address a goose problem and keep your yard free and clear of geese.

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“How to get rid of geese in my yard?” is a common question. There are approximately 7 million Canada geese in North America and they can be found in all 48 contiguous states at some point throughout the year.

While it may be tempting to try to injure or kill the geese that are causing such trouble in your yard, this is not a viable option since they are protected by the Federal Migratory Bird Act of 1918. Try one of the humane removal methods recommended below instead. These methods will also be more effective at keeping new geese from entering your yard.

how to get rid of geese

STEP 1: Add a predator decoy.

Coyotes are a natural predator for geese. Setting up a coyote decoy, or multiple decoys, on your property, can scare geese away. Decoys don’t always permanently remove geese, since the geese will often discover the decoy is not real.

However, you can make decoys more effective by placing them on something that will make them move or swivel. The added motion may be enough to keep geese away. Additionally, periodically changing the decoy’s location within your yard can also increase its effectiveness.

Related: How to Get Rid of Foxes

STEP 2: Set up a motion-activated sprinkler.

Setting up a motion-activated sprinkler is another solution to consider when you need to get rid of a group of geese. When these sprinklers detect motion, they shoot out a powerful burst of water that, while harmless, will startle geese.

Some sprinklers may even combine a loud sound with the blast of water for an even greater startle effect. Motion-activated sprinklers (available on Amazon) detect motion from dozens of feet away, and the water they shoot out can reach a large portion of a yard, making them more successful at teaching geese to stay away.

Related: How to Get Rid of Snakes

STEP 3: Let your lawn grow.

Geese feel safest in open areas with low-cut grass. This helps them have a better view of their surroundings and provides less cover for their predators to hide. Letting your lawn grow to a length of at least 6 inches can remove the safe and open feel from your yard. Taller grass may encourage geese to leave and look for another yard that will offer greater protection against potential predators.

how to get rid of geese

STEP 4: DIY a very loud noisemaker. 

Loud noises can also scare geese away. The hearing range of geese is the same as that of humans, so if you’re trying to make your own noisemaker, you should choose supersonic, not ultrasonic, sounds. To make a noisemaker to deter geese from staying on your property, find recordings of geese in distress, barking dogs, coyotes, or other predators. Setting these recordings up to play at various intervals around your yard can help encourage geese to move on and find somewhere else to go.

In addition to DIYing your own noisemaker, there are also supersonic noise makers made to deter animals from a yard (available at Bird-B-Gone).

Related: How to Get Rid of Squirrels

STEP 5: Adopt a dog.

Ducks and geese do not like dogs, so adopting a dog may be a plausible solution to your problem. However, keep in mind that you want to make sure the dog is trained to only chase the geese off of your property. You don’t want them to try to hunt or injure the birds.

Though most dogs will try to chase birds, some dog breeds are better suited for getting rid of geese and other animals. These include Border Collies, Australian Shepherds, and German Shepherds. These breeds possess herding instincts and are very attentive and intelligent, a perfect combination for keeping your property free of geese.

how to get rid of geese

Canada geese can be a real nuisance. Between the loud sounds they make and the droppings they leave all over the yard, finding a way to humanely remove them from a property can be imperative. The steps outlined above can help you regain your yard and keep geese from becoming a future problem. Remember, injuring or hunting Canada geese is illegal; choosing one of these more humane methods will help you protect your property without hurting the geese.