- Turns out what's good for the goose, is not good for the people, and a large population of geese caused a dirty problem in Tomahawk.
"A lot of people would not come down to the park just because of the problem with the geese droppings... Tonight there is music on the river [at Memorial Park] and we'll probably have 400 or 500 people in the park tonight. A lot of times people would bring blankets to sit on, and they just weren't able to do that, it was that bad," said Tomahawk Public Works Director Mike Tolvstad.
And heaps of goose droppings, are not just annoying, they're actually hazardous to your health.
"Two years ago we actually had two outbreaks of E. Coli bacteria at our beach area, and were directed by the county health department to shut the beach down," said Tolvstad.
"People who are exposed to water that's been contaminated with high levels of E. Coli can get pretty sick, they can end up with diarrhea, vomiting, and it can actually lead to more severe health problems," said Oneida County Public Works Director Anne Ovsak.
The city tried oiling eggs to control the population by preventing new chicks from hatching, as well as putting up fencing around beach areas, but it wasn't enough.
The city, along with the USDA rounded up nearly two thirds of the flock to be moved off site and put down.
Now that the birds are gone, the dirty problem has gone with them.
"It was so thick on the piers, because that's how they were getting up into the parks was the piers, but now, but right now there's nothing," said Tolvstad.
E. Coli levels at all lakes tend to rise after a rain, since the storm washes everything inland into the lakes, said Ovsak. She warns people to never feed geese at a lakeshore, because this will encourage them to gather there. She also said people need to clean up after their pets, or leave them at home. Dog feces can introduce bacteria into our swimming areas as well.
During the round up eighty-eight birds were gathered during the round up, the city says at least 42 birds are still in the area.
The birds they harvested will be fed to injured predatory birds like eagles and hawks, in rehabilitations centers.