Blame Canada!

Since we are heading into a trade war with Canada it’s time to rally the troops and remind them of the time Canada burned down the White House. And lest you think that is just a matter of history consider how Canada is attacking the United States today using biological weapons.

Smithsonian Insider: In the early 20th century, Canada geese were considered endangered in the U.S. So in the 1950s and 1960s, birds from the Midwest were released in eastern and southern states to boost their numbers. The strategy worked too well. Populations grew exponentially in the 1990s and today millions of wild Canada geese are permanent residents in cities and towns across the U.S., constantly eating and depositing large amounts of feces in the habitat they share with humans.

As public health concerns have grown, a team of biologists at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History recently decided to take a close look at the bacteria living in the intestines of these birds. What they found was eye-opening. Scientists discovered the high prevalence of 3 bacterial species that cause serious disease in humans: Clostridium perfringens, Streptococcus suis (harmful to pigs too) and Staphylococcus sp. Inside the birds they found other potentially pathogenic organisms that may contain virulent strains known to cause serious infections in wild and domestic waterfowl, poultry, domestic mammals and farmed fish.

When Canada geese are killed for food by animals such as a dog, fox or cat, or run over by a car on an urban street, these harmful pathogens are released into the environment and can potentially infect humans.

And don’t forget. All that foul language we have been hearing recently? Blame Canada!


Wait; you’re telling me that the geese weren’t driven here by global warming? Er, climate change?

Trump's wall will fail to stop these illegal immigrants.

Calling them "Canada" geese gives the responsibility for them to the Canadians, just like "French " fries and French kisses are the property of France. Try not to eat goose poop and things should be OK.

Not once but twice has America suffered the ignominy of defeat in war by the Canadians, during the early stages of the revolutionary war ("remember Quebec") and in the war of 1812. Maybe the Canadians used geese to defeat the American troops. Whatever, Trump seeks revenge for the humiliation at the hands of the Canadians, just like Trump seeks revenge for the humiliation at the hands of the Iranians. It's a little late perhaps, but Trump is a defender of America's honor. O Canada!

Right. "Canada" was fighting in those wars.

Might as well say that Guam defeated the Japanese in WW2.

True but if we define "US" and "Canada" broadly and ahistorically, it's fascinating how many times the US tried to invade Canada. Not just the well-known Revolutionary War and 1812 fiascos but several in the centuries before as the British attempted to wrest Canada from the French, with armies marching from the American colonies or fleets sailing across the Great Lakes.

Trump can't defend America's honor when he's doing a good job of ruining it. Turning America's closest allies into frenemies is straight out of the Trump/Putin playbook to destroy America.

This is scientific malpractice both by the original study authors and Smithsonian. 'Putative pathogen papers' are garbage; even if the original data is somehow useful, the discussion sections are toxic. From a microbiology perspective, the Smithsonian clickbait is misinformation.

I think you misinterpret the authors' intent, which is to scare the Americans ("invasion of the deadly Canadian geese") so Trump will dump the tariffs. That would be three defeats at the hands of the Canadians (or is it at the wings of the Canadian geese?).

Trump is a golf guy. The animosity towards geese is palpable.

Am I right in thinking that US law protects the Canada goose from hunting? If so, then we're doing it to ourselves.

If not for the law, I'd consider poisoning them.

Migratory waterfowl are controlled hunting, not prohibited hunting.

Bag limits and seasons are set based on population capacity. And there's increasingly a special season designed to target "local" year round resident populations, as opposed to true migratory flocks. But yes, outside the season, they are protected and thus very difficult to control.

Also yes, we do it to ourselves by providing attractive habitat and lack of predators. Golf courses and corporate parks are especially problematic with their wide-open grasslands and year round open water. Add a nearby cornfield and it's goose Mecca.

As McMike said, you can hunt them in season. For places where hunting isn't allowed (like inside urban areas), it's also possible for state and local government to get permission to do culls (where the geese are killed by other means).

Many of the problem geese are in non-migratory populations in (sub)urban areas. I know that it's popular to blame the federal government for everything, but federal law isn't the limiting factor. The limiting factor is local laws (and common sense) preventing you from hunting in city parks.

It may surprise you to know that Canada goose is a "red" meat. It's very gamey but aging it for a few days can decrease that. A properly cooked, and thinly sliced, canada goose breast is closer to roast beef than to chicken. It is the "steak" for many people with allergies to mammalian meat.
This is a delicious problem to solve.

Oh heck yes. I must confess to sometimes only taking the breast and lightly grilling it for salad, wasting the rest. (What can I say, I was young and lazy).

Roasting a whole goose properly is difficult. But done well, fekking delicious.

Caveat: diet is critical, a true migratory goose fed on corn and rice, with minimal stopovers on golf courses is mandatory. Those corporate park frankengeese scare the bejeez out of me.

“Those corporate park frankengeese scare the bejeez out of me.”

1) what makes them corporate?

2) what makes them frankengeese? Are you a resident of Al Franken’s (ret.) district? Are they living on micro plastics? Please enlighten us duck and goose hunters.

Lighten up Francis.

(1) I am a bird hunter.

(2) A corporate park is a manicured grass area surrounding office building complex, often with ponds. Often host to a resident goose population. The use of the term corporate in this context is descriptive, not a political commentary.

(3) Manicured lawns of this nature and golf courses in particular are notorious for extensive use of toxic feed and herbicides. Some people prefer to avoid consumption of game that have ingested those chemicals, along with avoiding swimming in their waters due to concentrated run-off. Hell, I'd rather eat a city pigeon than a golf course goose.

Man, I hope you were kidding and I just missed it.

Huh? Kidding about what?

All you seem to offer is political commentary so excuse me for assuming this was no different. Because I see thousands of Canada geese in cities and in the wild near our cottage. And above all I see them in parks, not in these corporate thingies you mention, but fair enough, I believe you. Anyway happy bird and other hunting. Would like to eat a few of these geese...

You are in the wrong. He is in the right. You need to lighten up and stop being so defensive. Get a sense of humor like your brother Timmy. It's no wonder he had more friends that you especially on weekends, when you just sat in your room crying salty, incel tears.

Wow, I just did a google image search, and it is red meat

Foie gras is about to make a HUUUUUUUUGE comeback in the US? (According to Webster's Ninth New Collegiate, 2018 marks the bicentennial of the delicacy's appellation.) --Even where it's consumption has been prohibited by law?

The Canadian goose is, strangely enough, the state bird of Hawaii:

They're related but different; I've seen both. Nenes are thought to have descended from Canada geese.

So, you can determine that two groups are of different species by appearance? Must be huge differences between them.

Yes, nenes are smaller, lack the distinctive white necks of Canada geese, make a soft "nene" sound (that's literally the sound they make) instead of honks and hisses, and are friendly to humans. At least the ones we encountered were.

They're so different that I was agog at PutinLover's statement that they're the same, but wikipedia confirms that they are thought to have evolved from Canada geese that presumably made it to Hawaii by being blown off course.

A timely reminder for the US to occupy North Rock and Machias Seal Island in the Gulf of Maine, start dredging to expand them and build military installations there. The Chinese have taught the world how to deal with border disputes with weaker neighbors and the US should follow its example.

I have high hopes that Trump will unilaterally declare that the USA owns Lakes Superior to Ontario and all lakes in between. (Ontario's new name Lake Baron. Although come to think of it, when did Southeastern Ontario last have a plebiscite to determine which country to belong to? (I'm sure we'll be happy to send up volunteers to help promote free and fair elections ) It's long overdue.

Mark my words, Manitoba will be our next Afghanistan.

Ha ha! You fools! You fell victim to one of the classic blunders - the most famous of which is "never get involved in a land war in the Prairie Provinces" - but only slightly less well-known is this: "Never go in against a Canadian when death is on the line"! Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!

If you check the fine print, Canada is not even technically a separate country from the USA. Although it's adorable when they pretend otherwise.

There was a merger in 1985. It wasn't publicized much. And frankly, no one noticed.

And here I thought the geese themselves were the biological weapons.

The British burned down the White House - at least that is what Americans are taught.

And they're taught correctly. The British troops involved were long-service regulars who'd been brought up from the West Indies. Local militias did play a secondary role in the defense of Canada but much less than Canadians are often led to believe.

For a long time but particularly under the last administration, there's been an effort to "nationalize" the war of 1812, turn it into an epic of Canadian history, a glorious victory with anti-American overtones. All nonsense. It was a brushfire war over trade & maritime rights, to which Canada was largely a bystander, and in which conquering Canada was never an object but just a bargaining chip.

True, but we are just splitting hairs here... Canada became a separate country in 1867 so taking credit for burning down the White House is a bit of a stretch. Also consider that we also burned down our own parliament buildings, twice. It just what we do.

Canada geese are an increasing nuisance. But I wonder about the relevance of those bacterial studies of their guts. Have the researchers looked at the guts of other birds (pigeons, starlings, etc.)? Or other animals: coyotes, rats, raccoons, etc. I expect we'd find a wide range of harmful bacteria in their guts too. Hanta virus and Valley fever are thought to spread from mouse urine.

And humans too. Giardia is sometimes called "beaver fever" because beavers can contaminate the water ... but humans are often the cause of contaminated water.

Goose poop is fine if cooked to an internal temperature of 160 degrees before consuming.

Don't you mean fowl language?

Some people may be missing the fact that Alex has a Canadian connection, too. Other notable Canadians with an Econ background include J. K . Galbraith and also Myron Scholes - winner of a Noble prize, and somewhat more famously known as one of the founders of Long Term Capital Management. So yes, blame Canada indeed..

Day of the Rake soon

Those geese are terrible. Why can't we hunt them?

gotta keep your feet on the ground and your head in the clouds one supposes.

Tabarrok is Canadian (“Canadian-American”). Perhaps that will help readers to appreciate the humor of his blog post and some of the comments.

Americans will never get over the fact that Canada is a more successful country than the US...

Canadian live longer, safer, healthier and wealthier lives than Americans.

If Canada does attack the White House again it will be good reason, to Free Melania !

If Canada does attack the White House again it will be for good reason, to Free Melania !

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