Geese Behavior

Canada geese are creatures of habit. They will come back to their place of birth year after year, and considering each goose can lay an average of 6 to 8 eggs and have a lifespan of 20 years, that can add up to a lot of geese.  To assist you in controlling your Canada geese problem, it is best to understand their behaviors. Learn more about Canada geese on our blog.

Ohio Geese Control’s staff is expert in goose behavior and the regulations around their management programs. Our staff is specialized in migratory birds and dog handling skills, because you can’t understand how to manage a population, until you truly know their behaviors.

Breeding Behavior

Canada geese usually begin nesting at three years of age, although a few individuals nest when they are two years old. They are monogamous and pairs usually stay together for life. You will see resident geese in Northern Ohio beginning to pair up and scout out their nesting location in February. It is best to start your Canada geese control program as soon as you see the first pair of geese back on your property to be most effective.


Canada geese usually nest within 150 feet of water, and most nests are surrounded by or are very close to water. Water provides access to food, a place to drink, aids in preening and bathing, and is an avenue of escape from predators. A typical Canada goose nest is bowl-shaped, and made from the surrounding vegetation lined with goose down plucked from the female’s breast. When patrolling an area, nests may be hard to detect initially, as they don’t start building up the area until the first egg has dropped. Our staff is expert in identifying nests at early stages to enhance your management program.

Nesting in Ohio typically starts in March, it is imperative to start a harassment program as soon as you see the first pair of geese on your property. Migrating geese tend to begin to come back to the area and pair up at the end of February through March. Resident geese will pair up even earlier, especially if the winter is a warmer than normal.

Canada geese become very aggressive during the nesting season and for the first 10 weeks of their goslings lives. This has caused many injuries and even deaths to bystanders that unknowingly cross their paths.


Adult Canada geese undergo a complete replacement of flight feathers each summer, which takes about a month for most individuals. Molting geese select areas near water that have good grazing and unobstructed views so as to see potential predators. Manicured lawns, parks, and golf courses suit their habitat requirements. The Division of Wildlife does not recommend aggressive harassing of Canada geese at this time, as the geese cannot fly away. Ohio Geese Control will not employ the use of Border collies during this time period, but we will put together a program to assist you during this period.

Let us help you manage your Canada geese problems. Our process begins with a site visit, depending on this assessment we will establish a service custom to our clients’ needs. We will give recommendations for combining and applying several dispersal methods. Constantly harassing the geese, we eventually force the geese to disperse. Call us at 877-91GEESE to set up your appointment.