MEDIA RELEASE: Mauston Charged with Gander Slander for Slaughter of 124 Geese and Goslings

MEDIA RELEASE: Mauston Charged with Gander Slander for Slaughter of 124 Geese and Goslings

MAUSTON, Wis. (August 17, 2021)In Defense of Animals and Alliance for Animals condemn the ruthless massacre of 124 geese and goslings by the city of Mauston and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). The National Goose Protection Coalition has issued a citation for Gander Slander to the city of Mauston for its cruelty.

On June 25, Mauston used taxpayer money to pay USDA-APHIS Wildlife Services staff to capture and slaughter 124 geese from several sites in the area. Mauston ordered the killings despite overwhelming opposition from over 11,000 In Defense of Animals supporters

Mauston oiled 130 goose eggs this spring, an effective technique which can reduce populations over time. However, the city also resorted to barbaric lethal measures to kill geese and their newborn babies. 

The city shot or gassed geese to death, the latter of which is an especially cruel method of execution for waterfowl who can hold their breath for long periods of time and suffer an excruciating death. 

Taxpayers paid the USDA $3,000 to mercilessly kill these innocent geese and goslings.

“When I found out I was shocked and saddened,” said Mary Telfer, of Alliance for Animals. “This is not only a lazy, cruel technique, but it is pushed by USDA-APHIS and a huge money-maker for them. This has to stop!”  

After another brutal capture in Madison, Wisconsin on June 22, an Alliance for Animals volunteer reported that two little lost goslings were walking down the street alone without an adult to protect them. 

“What Mauston did to these geese is heart wrenching — especially since nonlethal measures were in place to reduce goose populations” said Lisa Levinson, Campaigns Director at In Defense of Animals

“Instead of killing geese this year, the city should have waited to see the results of its egg oiling program and stopped this cruel and endless killing cycle. That’s why our National Goose Protection Coalition charged the city with Gander Slander. Compassion must be a guiding principle for decisions related to the wellbeing of geese, who are our wild animal neighbors.”

The National Goose Protection Coalition has issued a Gander Slander citation. Image: In Defense of Animals

In Defense of Animals’ National Goose Protection Coalition issues Gander Slander citations to decision-makers who opt for lethal measures when long-term, effective, nonlethal stewardship practices are readily available. The coalition was formed in 2019 to help concerned citizens stop goose cruelty in their communities.

To bring local attention to this disturbing situation, In Defense of Animals and Alliance for Animals have teamed up to stop goose massacres throughout the state. In July, the organizations co-hosted a protest against a goose slaughter in Madison, Wis., that was reported by                

Members of the public are encouraged to take action to prevent future roundups and slaughter of geese in Mauston

Learn more and find nonlethal goose stewardship strategies at:




In Defense of Animals, Lisa Levinson,, 215-620-2130
Alliance for Animals, Mary Telfer,, 815-715-1527 

In Defense of Animals is an international animal protection organization with over 250,000 supporters and a 38-year history of fighting for animals, people, and the environment through education and campaigns, as well as hands-on rescue facilities in India, South Korea, and rural Mississippi.

Alliance for Animals is a non-profit animal rights organization whose fundamental belief is that all animals, human and nonhuman, should not be treated as the property of another. The Alliance was created to promote ethical, compassionate treatment of all animals.


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