VICTORIA, British Columbia, May 16, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — When Jordan Reichert of the Animal Alliance of Canada heard CRD staff and directors say in the media and throughout the Alternative Approval Process (AAP) that the goose population was doubling every 4.3 years, he sensed something wasn’t right.
Reviewing all the data the CRD had made public on the Regional Goose Management Service (RGMS) Alternative Approval Process webpage, everything pointed to the population doubling every 14.3 years, not every 4.3 years, as was claimed.
On February 8th, Reichert brought this discrepancy to the attention of the CRD Board of Directors prior to them voting to pass the RGMS. Even when CRD staff was questioned by director Barb Dejardins on this discrepancy brought forward in Reichert’s presentation, they asserted the 4.3 number was correct and the vote passed with only two opposed.
Reichert then followed up with CRD staff asking for the data to support their assertion that the geese population was doubling every 4.3 years. They provided several documents that indicated an annual population increase of, at most, 4.92% between 1999 and 2019. When this is calculated for exponential population growth, the doubling of the population would be every 14.3 yrs. The CRD’s own data proved they were wrong.
“Staff had misinformed the CRD directors on the degree of population growth back in October 2022, which in-turn was shared with the public through the media numerous times throughout the AAP voting period,” said Reichert. “This completely invalidates the core premise of why the Regional Goose Management Service was being pushed through with such panic on behalf of the CRD and should invalidate the results.”
Animal Alliance of Canada is considering all options to hold the CRD accountable for pushing the Regional Goose Management Service forward, including hiring a coordinator for the project despite this false information being brought to their attention, and is hoping they will take immediate action to remedy the process.
“The Alternative Approval Process was convoluted and barrier-ridden for many residents to participate in to begin with, then you have false information being shared by the CRD which misled people, it is extremely unethical,” Reichert pointed out, so far to no avail.
Reichert says that while his research on this issue has exposed a significant flaw in the CRD’s own rationale for a goose cull proposed to take place in the RGMS, he would rather work with the CRD than against them, to find non-lethal solutions that work to address their objectives.
“From day one there has been no one representing the interests of the geese in this process,” he says, “and that leads to poor outcomes for geese, stakeholders, and the public. That needs to change moving forward.”
The Animal Alliance of Canada has been encouraging the CRD to adopt habitat modification to resolve human conflict with geese and egg addling to reduce the population rather than culling birds, which they say is ineffective and inhumane.
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