University of Delaware
delware environmental institute

UD study looks at population fluctuations of Canada geese in New Jersey

When populations of Canada geese and other species of waterfowl were on the decline in the Mid-Atlantic in the early part of the 20th century, conservationists made it a priority to save the species by protecting habitat, setting hunting restrictions, and translocating geese to the region. They were wildly successful and not only did the Canada geese populations explode in the Mid-Atlantic, some of those geese decided to take up permanent residence in the region.

A recent study led by the University of Delaware set out to understand exactly how much the resident Canada geese population has grown in recent years as well as looking specifically at how habitat has changed to influence hatchability and nest success.

The studies were led by Chris Williams, professor of wildlife ecology who also oversees a waterfowl and upland gamebird research program in UD’s College of Agriculture and Natural Resources; Kate Guerena, who received a master’s degree from UD in 2012 who now works for the United States Fish and Wildlife Service; and Julie Beston, a post-doctoral researcher who now works as an assistant professor at the University of Wisconsin-Stout.