Canada geese, ducks, and other waterfowl are valuable natural resources enjoyed by bird watchers and the general public. Currently, non-migratory waterfowl populations are increasing dramatically in urban/suburban environments in Pennsylvania, and in many similar areas across North America. The term non-migratory waterfowl (for the purpose of this fact sheet) refers to “resident” Canada geese and mallards as well as feral or domesticated ducks, geese, and swans. Feral or domestic waterfowl commonly reported as causing damage include: Muscovy ducks, mallard-derived ducks (Rouen, Pekin, and Blue Swedish ducks), Egyptian geese, greylag- derived geese (Emden geese), and mute swans. Generally, these birds live year-round in urban/suburban habitats and do not embark on traditional long distance migrations. The abundance of water bodies and vast expanses of lush turf grass typical of residential neighborhoods, corporate business areas, airports, community gardens, parks, and golf courses provide excellent habitat for these birds. In addition, waterfowl living in urban/suburban areas are relatively sheltered from predators and hunters and may receive food handouts from people. Resident Canada geese are particularly opportunistic and can easily become accustomed to people and residential areas.
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