In 2007, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) allowed an illegal goose round up to take place at the Robert H. Long Nature Park in Commerce Township. Oakbrook Pointe Condominiums applied for a permit to have the geese rounded up and removed. The permit was approved by the DNR. However, Oakbrook did not own the property on which the round up took place.
There was a goose living in that park that I named, ‘Brute.’ Brute had a contorted wing and a large scar on his chest, but he was certainly beautiful to me. He lived in the park for at least 5 years before the roundup. The company hired to remove the geese took Brute, his mate ‘Baby Girl,’ and both of their two babies. They, and many other geese that day, were taken because people who lived in condos bordered by a nature park couldn’t respect or appreciate nature. They lied about owning the property to illegally obtain a permit, and no one at the DNR bothered to verify their information.
Julie Oaks, at the Southfield DNR office, told me the DNR simply doesn’t have the manpower to check every application for accuracy.
Other residents of Commerce Township weren’t happy with the round up, either. The DNR made it nearly impossible for us to gain any information- to the extent of involving their lawyers. We persisted, but their attorneys would not return any of our calls or emails.
I asked Ms. Oaks what happened to the geese when captured. She told me that parents are separated from their young. She went on to explain that geese do not know their young, so it was a non-issue. I informed her that I knew that statement to be false.
She then told me that any visibly injured birds would be euthanized. All I could think about was Brute’s wing and scar.
The DNR took my Brute away from his home and killed him.
The DNR is relying on the public to be ill-informed about issues like these. The geese are taken to holding pens, and later transported to ‘releasable sites.’ The DNR would like to have us believe that these sites are sanctuaries, when in reality, they are hunting grounds.
I vowed after this incident that I would do anything I could to help protect these voiceless birds. I will be a thorn in the side of the DNR and any other government agency or official who acts inhumanely toward them.
This site is dedicated to my Brute, his family, and to all the other waterfowl that the DNR prey upon.