Seattle goose roundup protestor arrested for causing

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Wreck blamed on goose defender: - Game agent hurt during roundup of nuisance birds

2002-06-22

by Jamie Swift, Eastside Journal Reporter

An animal rights activist accused of injuring a federal wildlife agent who was rounding up Canada geese near the Renton airport was released from jail yesterday.

The 55-year-old Seattle man, well-known to wildlife agents, was arrested Thursday morning by King County sheriff's deputies and booked for investigation of assault.

``This is not uncommon for him,'' said Roger Woodruff, state director for the Department of Agriculture. ``He's been following us. Let's just say, this time he got caught.''

According to police, the man drove his car in front of agents' trucks three times and slammed on his brakes. The third time, an agent was unable to stop and ran into the man's car.

All of this occurred in the Bryn Mawr neighborhood near the 11500 block of Rainier Avenue South.

A 45-year-old Department of Agriculture wildlife agent was treated for neck and back injuries, according to the King County Sheriff's Office. The activist was treated for injuries prior to being booked into the Regional Justice Center.

The man apparently was protesting the killing of geese. Many animal rights activists vigorously oppose gassing or shooting adult geese to manage the population.

But wildlife officials say they are responding to a public outcry to control the geese, which have caused health hazards at local parks and beaches.

``We don't go anywhere where people haven't asked us for help,'' Woodruff said. ``It's our job to assist the public with this problem.''

Canada geese have been a problem in the Puget Sound area since 1989, Woodruff said. Only in the past three years has the agency resorted to lethal control methods.

``It's been bad,'' Woodruff said, adding that each bird drops as much as 3 pounds of feces per day.

Jamie Swift can be reached at jamie.swift@southcountyjournal.com or 253-872-6646.
 

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