Niagara Gazette — And while those techniques work for a while, and sometime not at all, Cygan said border collies’ natural instinct to corral the geese, causes them to move on to greener pastures.
“I’ve seen everything,” Cygan said. “The problem is the geese get used to these methods and eventually return. If they realize they’re being stalked they get scared and move on.”
On Thursday, Cygan’s oldest border collie, Gracie, put on display at Deerwood, responding to a combination of verbal commands and hand motions and speeding over the mostly melted snow that has consumed the course for the last several months.
“Once they learn a task they never forget it,” he said, adding that his year-round job covers 20 different contracts mostly in Erie County.
Miranto said he is hopeful the new venture will dissuade the geese from nesting on the course, which draws about $1 million in revenue each year along with 59,000 rounds of golf. City officials are pushing to open the course by early April.
“We’re in competition with a lot of other golf courses,” Miranto said. “And we’re trying to encourage people to play their golf here.”