Neighbors upset over killing of geese in public park - wave3.com-Louisville News, Weather & Sports

Neighbors upset over killing of geese in public park

The killing of geese and ducks in a La Grange park has some neighbors upset. (Source: WAVE 3 News) The killing of geese and ducks in a La Grange park has some neighbors upset. (Source: WAVE 3 News)
A sign at the park says no one is to touch the Canadian Geese. (Source: WAVE 3 News) A sign at the park says no one is to touch the Canadian Geese. (Source: WAVE 3 News)
City staffers say leaders tried many options for years to save the ducks and geese, but a huge amount of animal waste in the park has been impossible to get rid of. (Source: WAVE 3 News) City staffers say leaders tried many options for years to save the ducks and geese, but a huge amount of animal waste in the park has been impossible to get rid of. (Source: WAVE 3 News)
Charlotte Priddy (Source: WAVE 3 News) Charlotte Priddy (Source: WAVE 3 News)
LA GRANGE, KY (WAVE) - The killing of geese and ducks in a La Grange park has some neighbors upset. City officials say they had no choice due to a major health issue for families using the park. City staffers say leaders tried many options for years to save the ducks and geese, but a huge amount of animal waste in the park has been impossible to get rid of.

Neighbors say they understand that dilemma, but were caught off guard when gunshots rang out Tuesday morning near their homes.

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"I heard gunshots," said neighbor Charlotte Priddy who ran outside to see who was firing guns, not knowing at least 20 ducks and geese were seeing their final day at Wilborn Park next to her Washington Manor neighborhood.

Priddy said the animals are the reason many people use that park, "For the last 24 years they have always been here, the park is known for that."

While several geese and ducks remain, Priddy believes many more than 20 animals were killed.

[PREVIOUS STORY: City taking a gander at plans to remove geese]

La Grange Police Chief Kevin Collett said he was asked to have officers seal off the park while hunters shot the animals. He says shots were fired toward the ground not up into the air. Collett said was not sure who the hunters are or how they were selected, but none of his officers fired their weapons.

A sign at the park says no one is to touch the Canadian Geese. The Mayor wasn't available for comment due to family illness but a city staffer says a federal permit was granted to kill the animals after efforts like noise machines failed. With hundreds of geese and ducks on the property, the city maintains the huge amount of animal waste was dangerous, especially to children.

Priddy says the neighborhood has a bridge into the park and parents should have been warned because kids could have been hurt. "Children sneak into this park," she said. "There are several ways to get into this park other than that main entrance."

"I 100 percent totally agree and as a parent that (waste) is a concern for me," Priddy said, "However the way that they handled the situation I do not agree with and I do not think it was safe, and I do not think it was humane and I do not think it was fair."

Priddy said taxpayers should have been notified about such a kill and maintains getting the public’s feedback might have given the city more options. Her and other neighbors plan to take the issue up with the city council and with the parks and recreation department.

Calls made to U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services were not returned by news time Tuesday.

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