September 17, 2015 – An Effingham County golf course has gone to the dogs in the hopes of solving a long-time problem with geese.
While birdies and eagles are always welcome on the links, geese are a different story.
“It’s not much fun standing in the middle of the fairway getting ready to hit your shot and your ball has goose poop on it,” laughs Lost Plantation Golf Club pro Paul Johnson.
In addition to leaving behind plenty of droppings which can lead to water pollution and a few unfavorable lies, the geese disrupt play. To help combat the problem at Rincon’s city-owned golf course Lost Plantation, the Rincon City Council calling on the help of a canine named Bond.
“We had a couple options, including a catch and release program, but the dog seemed the best way to go,” says City Manager Wesley Corbitt. “It’s a very humane way to take care of the problem.”
Bond is a border collie, a working and herding breed of dog that comes with a $2,000 price tag. The 18-month-old dog will live with golf course superintendent Seth Zeigler.
Bond was purchased from FlyAway Farm and Kennels near Charlotte, North Carolina. In addition to supplying dogs to golf courses around the country, collies are also used to clear birds from airport runways around the world.
“The dogs have no interest in hurting the birds, they want to herd them,” says FlyAway owner Rebecca Gibson. “In the dogs mind they’re working just like they were herding sheep.”
Gibson adds Bond will cost the city an estimated $500 to $600 a year to feed and take to the veterinarian.
In addition to chasing geese away from Lost Plantation, Bond will also be used in a similar roll at Rincon’s Water Treatment Plant and at area parks that have similar problems with the waterfowl.
“The dog is going to improve an already great facility here at Lost Plantation,” adds Corbitt.