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Posted on: August 20, 2020

Decoys battle geese at Liberty Park

Coyote Decoy

CLARKSVILLE, Tennessee. – Decoys have been strategically installed at Liberty Park as a necessary step to address the rising goose population in the area. Decoys such as coyotes standing in the wetlands may be alarming at first, but they play a vital role in maintaining the park’s environment. Liberty Park is a great place for picnics, exercise, playtime, and to enjoy nature, but the geese who typically migrate in and out of the area have made the park their full-time home.

The City states there are currently around 250 geese who have made Liberty Park their permanent residence, and the amount of waste they leave behind is a growing issue. Each goose produces 1 pound of waste per day and up to 4 pounds if they are hand-fed. The waste is damaging the park turf, causing slip hazards on walkways, posing health concerns, and damaging the protected wetlands. All resulting in a growing burden to our taxpayers. 

One of the steps in the City’s plan to discourage the geese is to install four coyote decoys around the pond and in the wetland areas. The decoys will be relocated periodically to keep the geese from getting too comfortable.  

Signage at the park reminds patrons that feeding waterfowl and other wildlife is prohibited at Liberty Park. “Supplemental feeding has several negative consequences on goose habits. The most important step the public can take to help us address the overcrowding of geese in the park and help the animals’ natural drive to migrate is to avoid feeding them,” says Jennifer Letourneau, Director of Parks and Recreation. “We invite our guests to enjoy the park’s wildlife from afar observing their natural habits.”

The Canada goose was once decimated by hunting and loss of living environment. A successful effort to grow the population took place decades ago and they resettled in large numbers across the country. Canada geese prefer to eat grass and tend to graze in areas with large open spaces and within sight of water to allow them room to escape predators.

 About Clarksville Parks & Recreation

Clarksville Parks & Recreation provides a variety of indoor/outdoor programs, facilities, nature activities and entertainment events for people living in the Montgomery County and Fort Campbell area. These free or reasonably priced, year-round experiences help residents enhance their health, wellness, and social engagement—resulting in a stronger, better community.

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