Picture this: a picnic on green grass in a nice park. No one else in sight. You and your picnic buddies spread your blankets, sit down, and take out your treats: strawberries, sandwiches, cold drinks.
You have a nice moment of serenity, looking at the green. You see a glimpse of the sea between trees. The sun is warming your back pleasantly.
And then… where did they come from? A large flock of geese is heading your way. It looks like they aren’t moving, most of them chewing steadily away at the beautiful green grass, oblivious to the park surroundings. But moving they are, faster than you’d think. They’ve almost reached you. And they are plenty. They munch and poop in a reliable, non-stop manner, leaving a sticky, stinking trail of brown where there used to be fresh green.
Oh no, says a picnic buddy. We’re gonna have to leave. They don’t care for humans and they have little ones with them.
You agree, remembering the experience you had last summer when one attacked you – these geese look so tall when they stretch up to attack picnicking humans who happen to be sitting in their path. Two of your picnic buddies are animal-loving little children, and you feel pretty sure the geese are heavier than they are. An emerging fight would easily be won by the geese.
While you are processing all this, and lamenting the fact that you have to leave so early, you notice how they are moving your way. The leader stretches his head like a meerkat, looking you in the eye, fearless. He is evaluating you. Calculating.
Then you have a thought… They aren’t afraid of humans, but you never see them crashing a large event. What if you played some music, would that scare them off? Could they be fooled into thinking there were crowds of human allies behind the bushes, dancing and drinking noisily?
It’s worth a try, but you need to hurry. As quickly as you can, you dig your iPhone out of your bag. Fingers trembling, you open your “Favourite songs” list on Spotify and press play without looking. It’s reggaeton or Latin Pop, a summery tune in Spanish, and the volume is stuck quite low. The song is too relaxed and cheerful, not the mood you were looking for. Heavy metal might work better, but it’s not on your list. Why aren’t the volume settings working?!
As you are busy fidgeting with your phone, you miss seeing that the geese have definitely registered what just happened, low volume or not, and they do not agree with your music taste. When you finally look up, the leader is turning his head left and right, listening. And then something unexpected happens: they all turn around at once, telepathically it seems, and head back to wherever they came from. In minutes, they are gone. All of them.
What?! you think. My favourite songs did this?! Are you serious? The geese wobble away, the tiniest ones running to keep up, their tail feathers wiggling in quite an adorable way. Even the flock of geese further away on another lawn have disappeared after hearing your music choice. Problem solved, as easy as that!
These geese have been a debated topic for years: protected and hated, rendering parks and seaside areas unfit for recreational use. They carry the bird flu. They are not adorable. And no one has been able to come up with a solution to get rid of them in a violence-free manner. Until now! Maybe this is your road to becoming self-sufficient financially? Should you sell your solution to the highest bidder? Patent it? Perhaps your name will forever be marked in Wikipedia as Known for geese-moving tactics. They’ll build statues.
And seagulls and pigeons will land on the statues’ heads.