Jack Miner geese leg bands targeted in hit-and-run incidents

The discovery of seven dead geese near a Kingsville, Ont. bird sanctuary has owners worried the animals are being targeted for trophies.

Some of the geese have had their feet ripped off and leg bands removed, explained Mary Baruth, the executive director at Jack Miner Migratory Bird Foundation.

Most of the birds at the sanctuary are tagged with Jack Miner leg bands, which have become a hot commodity with some of the bands selling online for hefty prices. Baruth has seen some posted for $5,000.

Speeding motorists have also been a long-standing threat to geese at the sanctuary, but finding animals with the bands removed indicates something more than just an accident, Baruth explained.

"When you find, like we did yesterday, the foot and you see the leg was ripped off, then you start to wonder if it is a matter of aiming to hit them on purpose," she said.

Speeding still a problem

Speeders still remain the most dangerous threat to the 70 to 100 geese on the property, Baruth explained.

Speeding has always been a problem and still needs to be addressed, she said. Baruth watches drivers zipping along at speeds much higher than the 60 k/hr speed limit.

She plans to launch a petition getting support to install a speed bump. She has been in touch with city council and police, pleading for help in protecting the birds.

OPP received several complaints about speeding in the area back in May when there was a rash of killings. Officers monitored the area and handed out tickets over several weeks.

Extra police presence, though, only deters drivers temporarily, Baruth said.