'Mother goose' worries over wayward gaggle
ELLA Holland has frequented the Old Bruce Highway service station for four and a half years, but recently she has noticed the site's feathered friends getting a little too close for comfort.
Both the Kybong roadhouse, which now runs under the ownership of Puma Energy, and the surrounding rest area have been inundated by wandering goose families living in the surrounding ponds.
Ms Holland, 65, said she had regularly seen the geese waddling through the complex in search of food from travellers - at times even straying further out to the edge of the highway.
The Kandanga resident said she was concerned the geese could be struck by vehicles in future if they continue to roam.
"I always come here, but I only started noticing them about a month ago," Ms Holland said.
"They've been breeding here for generations, they're part of the land.
"This is their home, so they shouldn't be relocated, but I don't want to see them killed.
"I'd take them home if I could."
Ms Holland's concerns come despite last year's Section C highway bypass, which has stemmed traffic flow on the old highway.
The Daily Mercury reported an "unfair" act of animal cruelty in which a white vehicle ploughed through a crossing family of geese and killed one last May.
Ms Holland said a tried and tested solution would help contain the geese from danger while keeping them as an attraction for visitors.
"People were feeding them here for years, back when it was Matilda," she said.
"If people kept feeding them out on the back steps near the Matilda statue, they wouldn't come so far out.
"They could even be a tourist attraction for parents bringing their kids here."
A Puma Energy spokesperson said while native wildlife "should not be removed" from local habitats, feeding was prohibited due to health and safety procedures.
"We have strict policies in place that prohibit the feeding of wildlife at our service stations, and regularly encourage staff and customers not to do so."