MOUNT VERNON — The Ohio Divison of Wildlife undertook the banding of Canada geese in Foundation Park on Tuesday.
Karen Norris, Wildlife Communications Specialist, explained that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service must band juvenile and adult geese in order to monitor the population.
“Migratory birds (Canada geese, wood and black ducks, and morning doves) help set hunting quotas for the fall,” Norris said, and when hunters find banded birds they can report the band number to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Norris explained the importance of reporting band numbers.
“Reported band numbers are collected in a huge database of band numbers,” she said. “When hunters report bands, research is done on migration dates, based on where the birds were killed during hunting season.”
The group of eight Ohio Divison of Wildlife employees and four wildlife officers were required to meet a quota of 95 juvenile geese for the North Zone, which includes Knox County. This also included “recapping,” or collecting the band numbers of geese banded in previous years.
She said this time of year is prime for banding because the birds are flightless; the adults are molting and the juveniles do not have their adult feathers. Norris assured the News that the banding “is a quick process, we collect the sex of the bird, whether it is a juvenile or adult, and band the birds” and the officers “handle the birds as little as possible and as quickly as possible.” She did warn that for the officers, “biting is a hazard, it’s like a strong pinch.”
To report band numbers, residents can visit www.reportband.gov.
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