If you have spent any time outdoors the last couple of weeks you have no doubt noticed that Canada Geese are back in a big way, and many are migrating through the Bismarck Mandan area.

I take Yegen Road every day on my way to and back home from work.  This road goes along the south side of the Bismarck Airport, and the amount of geese I've noticed flying directly over the airport right now is alarming.

I'm just going to say it, it could be dangerous flying into or out of the Bismarck Airport right now.

Bismarck Airport Facebook
Bismarck Airport Facebook

 It has nothing to do with security, terrorist activity, or airline safety.  It has everything thing to do with what is also sharing the skies with these jets.  Little missiles with feathers that are powerful enough to take down a 737 jet.

If you haven't figured out what I'm talking about yet, I'm speaking of a Canada Goose, and right now they are very thick around the Bismarck Airport.

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I witnessed literally thousands of geese this past weekend in agricultural fields just east of the airport (noted by the photo above).  These fields are in a direct line with the way planes land or take off depending on the wind.

You might remember that the Bismarck Aiport spent millions of dollars to move water off of airport property into Apple Creek to keep birds such as ducks and geese off of its land.  Even though getting rid of the water has been accomplished, there's still a real danger of a collision between a flock of geese and a jet airplane because of all the birds feeding in agricultural fields around the airport.  You can read more about that here.

Why is right now could be a dangerous time to fly into Bismarck Airport?

Waterfowl, in particular, Canada geese are weeks ahead of their migrating schedule because of our unusually warm winter.  We have both migrators flying north to their breeding grounds and local geese that are calling the river home here in Bismarck.

Because of this huge influx of geese as noted above, their flyway and feeding grounds seem to frequently take them over the Bismarck Airport airspace.

The most dangerous time of course is when the geese are flying the most.  That would be in the morning and afternoon (when birds are migrating or heading to fields east of the airport to feed).

This past week on the way home from work,  I witnessed a United jet take off from the Bismarck Airport that was climbing upon take off that had not only a flock of Canada Geese above them, but below them as well.  I'm not saying it was an extremely close call, but it made me nervous to watch.

If just one of those geese were to get sucked into the engine it could bring it down.

You remember the movie "Sully" right?  According to Field Musem, here's why geese and other birds can be so dangerous to jets.

That's why flying an early morning flight or late afternoon flight could be more dangerous because geese are more active in the vicinity of the airport.

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Gallery Credit: Hannah Lang

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