Egg Depredation

Can the Canada Goose population be reduced humanely?

Yes, it can through Egg Depredation.

Egg depredation keeps geese from having a successful nesting season. This is one of the humane ways of controlling the Canada Geese population and is endorsed by the Humane Society of the United States.

Our Egg Depredation service provides:

  • Long term goose population control
  • Permit application assistance
  • Canada Goose egg and nest location documentation
  • Addling or oiling as directed by the state
  • Removal and burial off site
  • State report filing

What is Egg Depredation?

Egg addling refers to any process used to stop the development of the embryo. Though a number of methods are available, some are more humane than others. Oiling, shaking, puncturing the goose eggs or removing the eggs and replacing them with substitutes are all forms of addling. Successfully puncturing or shaking eggs is difficult and can result in the embryo’s continued development producing deformed goslings and other unwanted outcomes. Removing eggs from a nest will only cause the female goose to lay again.

Oiling refers to coating the egg(s) with a food grade corn oil. This preferred method stops the embryo’s development because the oil keeps air from passing through the eggshell. This process is done in early spring during the period when geese are nesting within 14 days of incubation.

The most important aspect of the 'oiling’ method is to completely cover or coat the goose egg evenly with oil and place it back in the nest. The use of vinyl or latex gloves is recommended to keep human scent from being transferred to the eggs which can help predators locate the nest and also to keep the handlerÂ’s hand clean. Addling can help manage the aggression of adult geese protecting the nest and reduces the growth of local goose populations and the damage they cause.

Since egg addling requires physical contact with eggs and goose nests, you must check with your State's Department of Natural Services for information on the permit and licensing requirements. All states must comply with the Federal Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918.


A pair of Canada Geese can increase to more than 50 birds in as little as five years:



Helpful note: Eliminate Preferred Nesting Areas - Islands and peninsulas provide preferred nesting spots for geese. These areas offer protection and security from predators because they are surrounded by water. If you want to avoid attracting geese when building lakes or ponds it would be best to leave out any islands or peninsulas.