Sooke Soccer Club photo, Facebook.

B.C. man uses ‘poop Zamboni’ to address goose dropping problem

A B.C. man is trying to make his community a better place—one turd at a time.

Mike Hicks, the electoral area director of Juan de Fuca, told the Times Colonist that he’s spent years searching for a tool that would tackle the district’s goose poop problem and now believes he’s found the solution. Thanks to a tow and collect machine made in New Zealand, Hicks said he’s been able to sweep up goose droppings off of recreational fields so that kids have a safe place to play sports.

He used some of the area’s federal gas tax money to buy one of the machine’s for about $10,000.

“I’m allowed to use it for recreational equipment,” he said. “And so this is a poop Zamboni.”

Hicks said he’s been employing the pooper scooper for test runs on soccer fields, but intends to let community associations use the machine on playing fields and golf courses. Hicks pulls the machine behind a small truck. A collection of brushes sweep the poop up into a hopper. Once it’s full, the contents can be emptied and hauled away.

The Sooke Soccer Club, that had its fields cleaned by Hicks, gave him a number of shout-outs on its Facebook page for his efforts.

The Capital Regional District in Victoria, B.C. has reportedly grappled with a Canada geese problem since non-migratory birds were introduced to the area in the 1960’s and 70’s. The district has sought help from the federal government to manage a soaring goose population said to be between 4,000 and 6,000.

Hicks, who is concentrated on his poop clearing initiative, said the contraption could be used for fields across the country.

“These fields must cost a couple of million dollars to build at the end of the day,” he said. “And for the sake of a maintenance person going out — you know once in the morning for an hour — and they’re beautiful fields [again]. So it’s a tremendous investment.”