CARMEL — One Carmel woman is asking 'who shot a goose?' after she found one injured.
Nancy Tatum is an animal lover, she looks forward to when Canada Geese call her backyard home. Earlier this week she says she found one goose that was struggling to stand up.
"She wasn't able to get up,” Tatum said. “She tried to move away from me and she fell down. At that point I thought this is not good I have got to get her in crate."
Tatum then took the goose to a local wildlife rehabilitation center and got it an X-ray, once that was done, she was horrified at what the result was.
"The X-rays showed that she had pellets in her,” said Tatum. “She has four pellets in her. So she had been shot."
Back in 2020, several residents in Tatum’s neighborhood wanted to euthanize the Geese that frequented the ponds located there. The issue was resolved, and geese still call the community home.
Tatum wants to use this goose getting shot with a BB gun as a teaching moment.
"I want people to realize you know you are not supposed to hurt these birds and if it comes down to it you can be prosecuted," Tatum said.
While Canadian Geese are seen all over the Midwest, it wasn't the case just 50 years ago. According to the DNR, the Canada Goose almost went extinct in the Midwest, now they are protected through the Migratory Bird Treaty Act.
"As far as shooting at a Canada Goose — that is technically illegal," Jessica Merklin, an urban wildlife biologist for Indiana DNR said. "You can't do that out of season and none of our permits would allow that either."
According to the Department of Natural Resources, one way to get geese off your property is by removing the nest and eggs. But you must get a permit through the US Fish and Wildlife Service to remove those nests. You can find that link on IN.gov.
"In June and July, Canada Geese actually molt their flight feathers so they physically can now fly anywhere," Merkling said.
As for the person who shot the goose saved by Nancy Tatum she has a message.
"Eyes are watching... I'll just put it that way,” Tatum said.
According to the DNR, killing or trying to kill a goose is a crime that can carry up to 60 days in jail and up to a $500 fine. If you find a goose or wild animal, in general, that is in need of care you should take it to a qualified wildlife rehabilitation center. Click here for a list in Indiana.
As for the goose that Tatum found, it is currently at a wildlife rehabilitation center being nursed back to health.