Outdoor Life Online Editor

The Aleutian cackling goose population, which once dwindled, is now so numerous that the bird has been taken off the Oregon endangered species list.

With numbers soaring at more than 64,000 birds, the cackling goose population is considered fully recovered. The population reached a low of about 800 birds in the 1960’s.

Last week, Gov. Ted Kulongoski signed a bill removing the bird from state protection.

Now, for the first time since 1982, the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife intends to propose a full hunting season for the bird. The agency’s decision couldn’t come soon enough for many ranchers and farmers who watched for years as the pesky geese grazed on their fields; costing them thousands of dollars in damages done.

The rise in Aleutian cackling geese is attributed to hunting restrictions in California’s Central Valley, and controlling foxes that prey on the birds’ nesting grounds in the Aleutian Islands of Alaska.

Kulongoski’s signature delists the bird for 180 days. The Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission will act to finalize the change in August.