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Protected barnacle goose carcasses found in forest

Four skinned barnacle geese were found in a forest in Parikkala on Wednesday. The barnacle goose is a protected animal in Finland, and the subject of some controversy due to their behaviour.

Valkoposkihanhet tarvitsevat tuoretta ruohoa.
Barnacle geese are considered troublesome by some, but the species is protected by law. Image: Vesa Marttinen / Yle

A nature conservation offence has been uncovered in Parikkala, South Karelia. On Wednesday a passer-by found four skinned barnacle goose carcasses in the woods in the Koitsanlahdenkangas area. The barnacle goose is a protected species in Finland.

The discoverer informed the South-Eastern Finland Border Guard of the find. A patrol was sent and found that the birds had been shot dead with a firearm.

The animals' meat had been removed and the rest of the carcasses had been left in the woods.

The Border Guard says it is possible that the birds had been shot elsewhere and dumped at the site.

Geese protected, valued by law

All of Finland's nesting bird species have a determined, indicative value. The value of a single barnacle goose being 336 euros, the value of the birds found skinned in Parikkala were worth 1,344 euros.

In addition to paying the net worth of the protected animals, the culprit must pay a fine for killing a protected species of bird and have their firearm confiscated when brought to justice.

The South-Eastern Finland Border Guard says its investigation into the shooter is ongoing. Possible sightings of the incident or anything connected to the four dead barnacle geese can be reported by calling the Border Guard at 0295 422 060.

The barnacle goose, while protected by law, is by some land-owners and other people considered to be a pest due to the copious amounts of excrement left behind by flocks of the birds in public areas such as beaches. No permits for culling barnacle goose populations have yet been granted in Finland.

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