updates from the field & ways to help from GoosewatchNYC
Sounds like even though we have some geese flying, some geese are still molting, so we can't know if they are done with roundups just yet. We continue to be on alert for another week or two. Just as a reminder, call me immediately if you see USDA activity and I will get out an alert. Call 567-694-6673 (567-NY-GOOSE). If you didn't receive the last message and wanted to, text "NYGOOSE" to 55678 to opt in.
I think it's safe to say we are the only reason most of the public even knows that roundups have happened in NYC so far this summer, so I commend everyone who continues to patrol parks and send updates!! Thanks to everyone who has been involved in coordinating our efforts, thank you! A huge thanks goes out to Jeffrey Kramer, he was dutifully on patrol last Tuesday, and without him we would not have footage of this past week's roundup at Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge. The link below is the voicemail he left that I responded to, and the text below was sent as an account of what his experience was that morning with some reflections. Powerful stuff. Audio of voicemail.
AT 6:00 I went to Brookville Park, left at 8:30 for JB. Communication was very poor, but my main concern, once I knew you were on site, was to make sure they don't leave without 1 of us tailing (so that we might find the slaughter plant and not have to bang our heads like last summer). I drove up-and-down Cross Bay Blvd 10x. Given the lack of manpower/interest in this site--though warnings were relayed about an impending cull--I think much was accomplished. I had always thought that this site was our best chance to be there during a cull and follow because of the large and slow operation with hundreds of geese to capture (unlike a small park), easier to follow because of a large convoy. My presence, or anyone else's presence, would not have made any difference in stopping a cull--anyone thinking so has delusions of grandeur. But this was a definite step forward. It's really all about information.
Special thanks also goes to Edita Birnkrant, NY Director of Friends of Animals for her help contacting news outlets while we were in the "wildlife refuge" documenting the roundups. Here's the press from this past week, most of these articles are very favorable towards us and our position on the issue. In general, it is helpful to leave comments (and write letters to the editor) so that the publication knows that people care and will continue to cover more stories on the issue:
New York Observer: Inwood Bird Slaughter has Animal Activists Crowing, by Hugh Bassett - July 2, 2013
NY Daily News: Hundreds More Majestic Canada Geese Killed in Name of Airline Safety in Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge, by Lisa Colangelo - July 2, 2013
New York Times: Annual Goose Roundup Underway in Jamaica Bay, by Andy Newman - July 2, 2013
Gothamist: Annual Goose Slaughter Underway in Jamaica Bay, by Lauren Evans - July 2, 2013
Epoch Times: Hundreds of Geese Rounded Up to be Killed in Jamaica Bay, by Jack Phillips - July 2, 2013
Manhattan Times (English-Spanish): Geese Culling Coils Residents, by Robin Elisabeth Kilmer - June 26, 2013
A Walk in the Park (blog): Canada Geese Roundup and Slaughter Heads to Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge, by Geoffrey Croft - July 3, 2013
SuperVegan (blog): 500 Geese Captured at Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge, by Elisa Verna - July 2, 2013
ANIMAL (blog): Goose Roundup Caught on Video in Queens, by Andy Cush, July 2, 2013
In case you missed the videos and photos we now have from the roundup at Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge which were featured in some of these articles:
Videos on Youtube
Part 1 (Full Video): http://goosewatchnyc.us4.list-manage1.com/track/click?u=f30b9b8b6b96841f3dcf76c40&id=a721b8f0b5&e=b81587f98c
Part 2 (Full Video): http://goosewatchnyc.us4.list-manage.com/track/click?u=f30b9b8b6b96841f3dcf76c40&id=458852b5c9&e=b81587f98c
More videos: http://goosewatchnyc.us4.list-manage1.com/track/click?u=f30b9b8b6b96841f3dcf76c40&id=d29a6a15a7&e=b81587f98c
Photos on Facebook:
Note: it would be impossible for us to provide an exact number of geese killed, and any numbers provided or reported should be assumed only to be either our own best estimates, or as provided by the government. Originally National Park Service said they were aiming to kill 500 geese, later they said the number was 262, and most recently Martin Lowney told Mary Beth Purdy Artz the number was 231 and they left 100 geese behind. Our volunteers have been patrolling Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge and reporting population counts for months - not long ago in mid-May we could barely find a few dozen geese. But then things changed in June and Jeffrey Kramer reported seeing hundreds of geese by early June, he took the photo above on June 13, 2013. Who can know the exact numbers of how many geese were killed but for the killers themselves? I find it likely that the number killed is between 200-300 geese, not 500 geese as I originally suggested. Still, as the New York Times article reports, "the government is trying to nearly halve the Canada goose population in 17 Atlantic states, to 650,000 from 1.1 million," and "322 geese captured at city parks so far this year." I'll do my best to make sure the information provided here is always as accurate as possible.
Please call your elected officials about this issue today. Share your view that a wildlife refuge is supposed to be just that, not a killing field Let us know how the conversation goes:
NY City Council: http://goosewatchnyc.us4.list-manage2.com/track/click?u=f30b9b8b6b96841f3dcf76c40&id=6c7b3ac96b&e=b81587f98c
National Park Services Deputy Superintendent Suzanne McCarthy: 917-731-1997
National Parks of New York Harbor Conservancy: 212-668-2321
Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge: 718-354 4602
Mayor Bloomberg: 212-788-3000 (you will probably be rerouted to 311)
Senator Gillibrand: 212-688-6262
Governor Cuomo: 518-474-8390
NY Assembly: http://goosewatchnyc.us4.list-manage2.com/track/click?u=f30b9b8b6b96841f3dcf76c40&id=cfe0459dcd&e=b81587f98c
NY Senate: http://goosewatchnyc.us4.list-manage.com/track/click?u=f30b9b8b6b96841f3dcf76c40&id=57b2925197&e=b81587f98c
Our Petition: http://goosewatchnyc.us4.list-manage.com/track/click?u=f30b9b8b6b96841f3dcf76c40&id=b49c98a12d&e=b81587f98c
Thank you to the hundreds of people who have already commented: http://goosewatchnyc.us4.list-manage.com/track/click?u=f30b9b8b6b96841f3dcf76c40&id=c15a7b9e2e&e=b81587f98c
Thanks again to everyone for all your support these last few days and weeks. Some people emailed about donating, we want to continue getting the word out about what is happening, and continue to spread love for these animals, so we're very grateful for that, and we also have merchandise for sale here.
I will be in touch with more information as soon as possible. In the meantime, keep up the great work - making phone calls, posting comments to articles, it is all important and helpful. Check Facebook and Twitter for more regular news and updates.