Friends of Lagoon Valley

along I-80 between Fairfield and Vacaville in Solano County, California

The Straight Scoop on the Goose Poop at Lagoon Valley Park:

Click to read Lake Merritt goose poop story from Oakland Tribune 07/29/07

Click to read "Ode to the Goose" by an anonymous Goose Poop Poet 2005
(thanks to Michigan environmental engineer Stacy Daniels for passing this along!)


And here's what the City of Vacaville's Lake Management Plan says about our goose poop:

Existing Water Quality: Bacteria -- Total coliform bacteria levels are indicative of decaying organic matter, while fecal coliform bacteria levels are indicative of animal waste in the water...  The large numbers of domestic, cross-breed, and wild waterfowl using the lake for foraging and resting through most of the year results in substantial input of waste material to the lake.  Some of this waste material ["goose poop"] is deposited directly into the lake, and the waterfowl waste deposited on the adjacent lands is washed into the lake during storm events.  This waterfowl waste not only raises bacteria concentrations to levels unsafe for water contact recreation, but it is also a source of nutrients that allow excessive growth of algae and rooted aquatic plants. (p. 32)

Management Action 10: Waterfowl and Turf Fertilizer Waste Management: ... To reduce nutrient and bacterial input from waterfowl waste, a program could be initiated to discourage waterfowl from their primary foraging and resting area on the mowed picnic area along the eastern shore, west of the paved park road.  This program would entail a combination of runoff management and treatment, educating the public, enforcement and the trapping and removal of domestic waterfowl, as follows:

Landscaping and Runoff Treatment -- The eastern shoreline area, north of the boat ramp, could be re-graded in a manner to provide a vegetative buffer to diver and detain sheet runoff into the lower tributaries and lake... The basis could be vegetated with herbaceous wetland vegetation that could further detain runoff and allow nutrient uptake.  A biofilter could also be used.  These basin areas could be periodically cleaned, as needed.

Educating the Public and Enforcement -- Large and clearly visible signs should be posted in English and Spanish advising that the feeding of waterfowl causes lake pollution, is harmful to the waterfowl and is illegal.  Park rangers should periodically issue warning notices, in both languages, to persons who violate this rule, and the possibility of issuing violation notices with associated monetary fines should be considered.  

Trapping and Removal Program -- Domesticated waterfowl should be trapped and removed from the eastern shoreline area on a twice-annual basis.  The goal of the program should be to greatly reduce or eliminate resident waterfowl in the area.  (p. 64)

(Lagoon Valley Lake Management Plan, LSA Associates, Inc., 1999)

A Google search on "dog chase geese lake" turns up 15,700 references to using dogs to chase geese away from lakes, golf courses and other public places.  Note especially: 

Geese Police


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Last updated: 05/24/09