The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Local News

July 4, 2012

Carl Junction ordinance bans feeding of waterfowl

CARL JUNCTION, Mo. — Don’t feed the geese in Carl Junction.

Or the ducks.

The City Council on Tuesday approved an ordinance prohibiting the feeding of geese and ducks at any of the city’s parks, citing a public health concern.

“This has been precipitated by some people who live along the side of lakes,” Mayor Mike Moss told the council. “Some of their neighbors are feeding them, which is encouraging more waterfowl.”

Waste left behind by the waterfowl is polluting the yards and driveways of nearby residents and causing nutrient loading in the lake, Moss said.

Moss said the problem stemmed from an Airport Drive resident who fed Canada geese for years, which caused them to stay in the area rather than migrate. Moss believes that with that person’s death, the waterfowl just moved to nearby bodies of water, including those in Carl Junction parks.

After a brief discussion, the council unanimously approved the ordinance. Signs are to be installed in coming weeks.

“Everyone wants them gone,” said City Administrator Steve Lawver.

The city of Pittsburg, Kan., faced a similar issue in June 2009, when public health officials deemed the population of waterfowl at Lakeside Park unsafe, and a wildlife biologist with the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks said an abundance of nitrates from waterfowl feces was polluting the lake.

Pittsburg city commissioners approved a plan to capture and relocate the majority of waterfowl in Lakeside Park and ordered signs installed prohibiting any feeding of the birds.

In other business, the Carl Junction council:

• Approved an ordinance at the recommendation of the Planning and Zoning Commission that shortens the site plan review procedure. Now, anyone who has previously completed preliminary site plans and obtained building permits, and then wants to add on to those plans does not have to go through the entire review procedure for approval.

• Approved acceptance of updated flood plain maps used by the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the State Emergency Management Agency. Lawver said Carl Junction “came out on the good side” during recent map updates in comparison with some other area communities where land was added to the flood plains. “We had some shrinkage of the flood plain in areas that were borderline,” he told the council.

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