An American company is offering specialised goose hunting trips to the Netherlands, describing them as ‘one of the world’s best hunting opportunities’.
Website GetDucks.com, says the Netherlands not only offers ‘liberal’ shooting for an ‘enviable collectors list of species’ but an ‘immersive tour of this beautiful country that hunters and non-hunters will each enjoy.’
Referring to the sharp rise in goose numbers in the Netherlands, the website states: ‘the unprecedented biological tsunami of geese results in severe economic loss, poses a dire public safety hazard – and provides some truly great goose hunting when the weather and birds cooperate.’
According to the Leeuwarder Courant newspaper a five day trip, including luxury bed and breakfast accommodation, costs $4,600.
The paper says it would appear that Dutch hunting legislation allows foreign nationals to go on ‘trophy hunts’. Nevertheless, Labour MP Henk Leenders has asked the government .
In the meantime, US hunters are full of praise for their Dutch experiences. ‘We got 42 barnacle geese and website wood pigeons during two morning hunts,’ hunter Richard Welker wrote on the company’s site, alongside a photograph of the dead birds.
‘I think we took 40 geese on the opening day. That was a lot of fun and we had plenty of opportunities to see and shoot at birds,’ wrote Daniel Yorkey. ‘We’re going back – pencil us in for next August for sure.’
The government wants to reduce the size of the goose population in the Netherlands back to its 2005 levels which, experts say, will entail the slaughter of 500,000 birds.
In May, the European Commission has given the green light to pest controllers to gas hundreds of thousands of geese throughout the Netherlands. At present, geese can only be gassed within a 20 kilometre radius of Schiphol airport because of the threat the birds pose to aircraft.
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