The Department of Natural Resources and Environment reminds hunters that the early Canada goose hunting season opens statewide Wednesday, Sept. 1.
Early goose season, designed to target resident giant Canada geese, runs through Sept. 10 in the Upper Peninsula and in Huron, Tuscola and Saginaw counties, and through Sept. 15 elsewhere in Michigan.
Prospects for the upcoming goose season are excellent; the resident Canada goose population is estimated at 300,000 birds, the second highest population ever recorded. Hunters may take five Canada geese daily during the early season.
Wildlife officials remind hunters that a number of Canada geese in Calhoun and Kalamazoo counties within the Kalamazoo River watershed were covered with crude oil following the Enbridge pipeline rupture in late July. Hunters who observe oil-covered geese or other oiled wildlife should report them to 800-306-6837, the Enbridge wildlife response hotline.
Geese that were rescued, cleaned and released sport double leg bands, one of which reads: “Oil Spill Bird Contact Michigan DNRE 1-517-336-5030.” Hunters who harvest the birds can call the phone number to get more information. The Michigan Department of Community Health suggests that adverse health effects from consuming these birds are unlikely.