Dozens of Geese to be Euthanized Amid E. coli Outbreaks in Lake Wildwood

NEVADA COUNTY -- For the thousands who call Lake Wildwood in Nevada County home it's the peace and scenery that that drew them there.

However, some say things have unnecessarily turned violent recently and they aren't happy about it.

About 15 people, some who live at Lake Wildwood and some who do not, held signs in protest Thursday night.

Posted signs in the community show E. coli has become an issue in or near the lake. But what protesters were mad about is who's getting the blame for the bacteria.

"It is very difficult for them to find the source of the E. coli," said Kelcie Leach, an adoption manager at Animal Place. "It's not from the geese that they know of. So the reasons that they're killing the geese are unjustified."

Through a federal permit, HOA officials have begun euthanizing some geese, believing the birds and their feces may be the cause.

However, those who demonstrated outside the community's main gate are not sold that the waterfowl are the cause. Instead, they believe sewage issues are to blame.

Either way, they didn't want the geese to die.

"Nobody has addressed the sewage problem. We have thousands and tens of thousands of sewage leaks that have occurred in at least the two years that I have lived here," said one protester. "It's unacceptable. It's unsafe."

FOX40 left a message with the community's general manager but didn't hear back.

In an article by The Union, the general manager said the permit allowed them to eliminate 75 geese.

Resident Janet Herrin says some neighbors of hers are unaware the geese are being killed.

"When I have spoken to people they have been outraged and said, 'No, no, they can't do that,'" Herrin said. "And I said, 'They're already doing it.' They did not know. Now that's their fault for not being informed."

Lake Wildwood and Nevada County agencies are currently facing a lawsuit from people who say they contracted E. coli while swimming in the lake.