Campaigners have geared up their efforts to end the controversial method of lasering geese in Hall Place after reports of “distressed” birds.

The method, in which lasers are shone at the geese, has been criticised for “discouraging wildlife” to the Gardens.

A 450-strong petition, started by Donna Zimmer in April, reads: “Countless visitors have enjoyed observing and photographing the geese with their goslings over the years.”

It also criticises Bexley Council for resorting to lasering after receiving “a few complaints about goose poo.”

Speaking to News Shopper, Donna said: "I've lived in Bexley all my life. I've always enjoyed being brought up to Hall Place to go and see the geese.

"I have three children of my own and they've all had the same experience."

An RSPCA spokeswoman said of the method: “As with humans, we would not support shining a laser directly into an animal’s eye.

“However, we are aware that the indirect use of lasers to deter problem flocks of birds is one of the non-lethal deterrent methods that is currently being tested by researchers.

“If that approach is proven to be effective and humane, the RSPCA would certainly welcome it.”

In May, News Shopper reported Bexley Council had stopped selling bird food on the site and had started using lasering on the resident geese.

This year the council has invested £600k in Hall Place to renovate the Gardens and drive up visitors. 

But Donna, 45, argued renovations can be made alongside maintaining the wildlife.

"I've not objected to any of their plans, but you can have the geese too," she said.

READ MORE: Council denies 'discouraging' geese from Hall Place after poo complaints

Amarjeet, a keen photographer who visits the park several times a week, told News Shopper she was at Hall Place last week with her mum when she was disturbed by some “distressing” noises.

“We walked by the bridge and there were two geese there. I carried on walking past them, taking a lot of photos and standing around.

“Suddenly we heard an almighty commotion which made us turn around. There was quite a distressing noise and initially I couldn’t work out what it was.

“It was kind of like something had really spooked them. I turned to my Mum and said, ‘What’s making that noise’?”

“Then, when I looked, there was a gentleman shining a green laser at the geese, at which point they took off very quickly. They were low to the ground and they were trying to get away quite quickly.”

Amarjeet, from Dartford, who has used the park for many years, said she did not see any more geese during her visit, which she thought was unusual for Hall Place.

“We’ve been going there for years. It’s part of visiting there. You know the geese are going to be there.

“They’ve never caused us a problem.”

Although the effects of lasering are not fully known, Amarjeet said she believed the geese were distressed by the laser.

A Bexley Council spokeswoman said: “This year Hall Place has experienced a large influx of Geese and they were damaging the river bank, the flower beds and discouraging other forms of wildlife to flourish.

“Their waste also caused a mess and slip hazard around the grounds and paths and - when walked in - to the house and visitor centre café.

“On occasion a handheld laser device has been used by a trained member of staff as a humane method of moving on the geese.

“No birds or other wildlife were harmed by its use, it simply moves the geese on and they migrate back at a later date.

“By reducing their visits to the site in this way the balance has been bought to a more manageable level.”

She added wildlife at Hall Place and Gardens is “a very important part of what we do” and is encouraged by the Council.