A national organization that advocates animal rights is condemning the Saranac Lake Central School District for its decision to euthanize geese.
The district's board of education decided to move forward with a plan to kill a flock of "nuisance" geese earlier this month, following significant public outcry both in support of the plan and against it.
Supporters of the plan argue that the geese produce a considerable amount of excrement, which has taken over school grounds and resulted in a health risk for students and faculty.
Opponents say the plan is inhumane and sets a poor example for children.
Now, the Humane Society of the United States has chimed in, condemning the board for its decision.
Patrick Kwan is director of the New York state chapter of the Humane Society.
"The Saranac Lake School Board could have used this as an opportunity to teach its students a valuable lesson in kindness and compassion toward wildlife, but instead, it has opted for an inhumane, ineffective and unnecessary geese slaughter, which sends a terrible message to youth," he said.
Kwan says conflicts with wildlife can be "effectively resolved" using humane, long-term and less controversial solutions.
According to Kwan, techniques like habitat modification, aversive conditioning, and humanely preventing population growth are better alternatives to euthanizing the geese.
Kwan claims that the Humane Society has made "repeated offers" to assist in solving the geese problem.
The Humane Society is urging school officials to "immediately halt plans to go forward with the slaughter of geese."
The school district expects to carry-out its extermination plan in the coming weeks.
Calls to board members and school district officials went unreturned Thursday.