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Cedar Rapids law prohibits residents from feeding wild animals

Do Not Feed Wildlife, photo from the City of Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Residents of a city in Iowa could face fines for feeding geese.

According to a spokesperson from the City of Cedar Rapids, beginning October 1, 2013, anyone caught feeding “waterfowl” or a “wild animal” could face  fine of $75. A second and third violation will cost $150 and $300 within one calendar year.

An ordinance passed in May of 2013 made it illegal to feed animals on public property. According to the ordinance, “waterfowl” includes ducks, swans, geese, herons, or any bird that “frequents the water.” A “wild animal” is defined as any animal that is not a pet, or animal that is generally accepted as a pet. This includes raccoons, squirrels, birds, feral cats, turkeys, opossums, skunks, beavers, cougars, coyotes, foxes, bears, and others. Click here to see the ordinance.

The ordinance also states that residents on city owned public property cannot knowingly set out food that would attract an animal. The law does not apply to animals being fed at the Parks and Recreation Beaver Zoo or Old McDonald’s Farm.

Officials from the City of Cedar Rapids said this rule has been set to protect wildlife and avoid safety hazards.

The city will be posting “Don’t Feed the Wildlife” signs along the Cedar River and nearby waterways.