Kansas State University
205 Leasure Hall
Manhattan, KS 66506-3501
Phone: (785)532-6070
Fax: (785)532-7159


About the Unit
Mission Statement
Unit News


Faculty and Staff
Graduate Students

Current Projects
Completed Projects
Technical Assistance
Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU)

Resources and Employment
Graduate School
Graduate Applications

Forms and Manuals
Assistantships and Positions

Assessment of Resident Canda Goose Management in Kansas

John Malanchuk, Ph.D. Student

Project Supervisor:
Dr. David Haukos

Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism

Kansas State University



Status: Began 2017

Canada Geese (Branta canadensis)


Provide comprehensive review and recommendations toKDWPT's resident Canada goose survey's stratificaUon, plot allocation, and statistical methodology.

Compare precision and efficiency of the plot survey to estimates ofabundance based on bandingresident Canadageese in Kansas.

Determine the annual survival, harvest distribution and derivations of resident Canada geese banded in Kansas with comparisons on a statewide, regional and other scales (e.g. rural versus urban).

Compare movement andsurvival of translocated, resident Canada geese to non-translocated geese.

Examine fidelity of recaptured resident Canada geese.

Determine the need for regional banding quotas or if statewide protocol would suffice to address management needs.

Evaluate the current management programs (i.e., relocating nuisance geese, nest destruction) for resident Canada geese in Kansas with emphasis on the benefits of translocated geese.

Progress and Results:
As resident Canada goose (Branta canadensis) populations have increased so has the need to improve biological data to support management decisions. Information on population size, distribution, population potential, survival, movement and nuisance abatement are essential. Although abundance anddensities of resident Canada geese in Kansas have remained below national trends, their number and perceived/realized effects gamerconsiderable management and resources. Asa result, Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks, and Tourism (KDWPT) has used a variety of management strategies including expanded hunting opportimities, nuisance goose relocations, and nest/egg destruction to sustain abundance at socially accepted levels.

Current and future management of resident Canada geese requires accurate measures of resident goose abundance and distribution. Prior to 1996, attempts to gamer information on resident Canada goose dynamics in Kansas were through anecdotal information and periodic and localized studies. From 1996 to 2010, the population status of resident Canada geese in Kansas was obtained by KDWPT through ground-survey routes conducted late March and early April. In April 2011 KDWPT transitioned fix>m the trend-based roadside counts to an aerial plot survey where credible population estimates could be derived. Now, a stratified, random plot, aerial survey is annually conducted to gather information onresident Canada geese abundance and distribution in Kansas. Stratification is based on habitat metrics and land use patterns for each unit of the Public Land Survey System of Kansas. Surveys are conducted during the month of April to coincide with peak nesting for resident Canada geese in Kansas. Estimates are derived for indicated breeding pairs and total geese for each stratum as well as statewide. In the initial year,surveystratification wascompleted at the county level based on KDWPT field staff professional opinion of the goose density (high, medium and low). Each subsequent year, elements were incorporated to refine stratification. These elements have reduced confidence intervals; however, confidence intervals around the population estimate still remain greater than the desired 15%. Efforts are needed to better define stratifications, select optimal allocation of plots for each stratum and standardize survey protocols. With the advent of an operational banding program in 2012 in Kansas, comparisons cannow be conducted to explore if accurate population estimates from band returns could provide the similaror improved precisions at lower costs than current population estimate methods.


Professional Presentations: