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Geese

What geese do we have here in mahogany?

We have frequent sightings of Canada Geese in Mahogany. The Canada Goose, Branta canadensis, is native to the area during the warmer months of the year.

How big are Canada Geese?

The Canada Goose can grow to have a length between 75 and 110 cm (30 - 43 in), and a wingspan between 127 and 185 cm (50 - 73 in). That’s over 6ft!

What do Canada Geese eat?

Canada Geese are primarily herbivores, although they have been known to eat small insects and fish. They like to eat green vegetation and grains, and aquatic plants. In urban areas, they are known to pick food out of garbage bins, and scavenge for food left behind by humans.

Where do Canada Geese live?

Canada Geese migrate south to warmer areas between September and November, and back north during Spring. They are native to Canada and the northern United States, and in the southern United States and northern Mexico as migrants during the winter. Nests are usually located in a concealed area, close to a food source.

Why are Canada Geese a health and safety hazard in Mahogany?

Canada Geese are aggressive towards humans and other animals during mating and nesting season. They are especially protective of their offspring, and will sometimes attack any threat near its territory or young. They attack by first hissing as a warning, and then follow up with bites and wing slaps if the threat persists. As they have often been seen around the lake with goslings, they can be dangerous to curious children and unsuspecting guests who are enjoying the MHOA parks and lake.

Canada Geese become hostile towards humans who don’t feed them if a pattern of regular feedings has been developed. Canada Geese are also susceptible to being a factor in causing Swimmer’s Itch.

 

Gulls

What gulls do we have here in Mahogany?

A majority of our gulls are American Herring Gulls, also known as the Smithsonian Gull (Larus smithsonianus).

How big are these gulls?

American Herring Gulls have a length ranging from 53 - 66 cm (21 - 26 in), and a wingspan between 120 and 155 cm (47 - 61 in). Males are typically slightly larger than the females.

What do gulls eat?

Gulls are extremely adaptable feeders. They eat a varied diet that includes marine invertebrates such as mussels, crabs, sea urchins and squid, fish, insects, plant and fruit seeds, animal carcasses, and human garbage. They have been known to steal food from humans, and pick food from garbage cans.

Where do gulls live?

Gulls live all over the world. There are many species of gulls that have different characteristics and behaviors that have helped them live in any environment. American Herring Gulls are found all across the northern part of North America, from Alaska to the great lakes. These gulls migrate to warmer areas such as Hawaii, the West Indies and to Mexico and sometimes even further south to Colombia or Venezuela. Gulls nest in colonies near water, and sometimes on rooftops in more urban areas.

Why are gulls a health and safety hazard in Mahogany?

Gulls are intelligent birds, adapting quickly to their environment and are incredibly resourceful. If they are able to identify an area that provides safety or food with ease, they will keep coming back, and may be infected with the parasite that causes Swimmer’s Itch. Wherever the birds go, they leave behind waste which contains bacterias such as salmonella, or campylobacter which causes diarrhea in humans. They can also bring Giardia and Cryptosporidium, which both cause a diarrheal illness. Gulls have also been named the primary source of E. coli in water when present.

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