At first they worked — but then, they didn’t.

According to some Darien residents, the fake floating swans that were recently placed on Tilley Pond are no longer doing their job of driving away the geese.

The geese, along with the mess they make, are back in in full force. They’re no longer deterred by the eight fake white swans that are spread out around the pond, according to local residents.

When the swans were initially placed there by the Darien Parks & Recreation Commission, the geese immediately disappeared, according to one neighbor.

However, in a recent letter to The Darien Times, resident Kimberly Kendall wrote that the geese are now completely ignoring the swans.

The swans “appeared to work the first few days, but a couple days ago, I witnessed one family of Canada Geese enter the pond, swimming not even four feet away from one of the swans — and I might add they were not in a hurry!” Kendall wrote.

In her letter, Kendall further wrote that the Canada geese were followed shortly thereafter by a second family of geese.

“Too bad they caught on so quickly as the algae in the pond — contributed to by their endless droppings — is going to choke the life out of any remaining fish or other pond-dwelling creatures,” she added.

Those who live near the pond have complained to the Parks and Recreation Department for a while about geese droppings, both in and around the pond.

Prior to the fake swans, the town had employed a company that used dogs to scare away the geese. It was successful, according to neighbors.

However, the dog company was expensive so the town decided to try the fake swans.

In her letter, Kendall wrote that she hopes the town can find a less expensive alternative “and soon.”

Aside from Kendall’s concerns, others have reacted to the fake swans as well. On The Darien Times Facebook page, there were a handful of responses to the prior swan article that was posted on July 2— most indicating the swans are not doing their job.

One resident, Caroline Grady Platt, wrote: “If only the geese were fake!”

In response to residents’ comments, Parks and Recreation Director Pam Gery said the department is trying different methods to deter the geese that have not been tried in the past.

“We are watching and waiting,” Gery said, referring to the swans. “If they do not work, they will be pulled from the water at some point.”

Solar-powered device

Aside from the fake swans, a solar-powered mechanism called a denier is also being used at Tilley Pond to deter the geese. The lights blink at night to disturb the geese’s sleep.

At night, the denier turns on yellow and purple lights that the geese don’t like, according to Gery.

There are three deniers in the pond.

“I understand that the denier will need a few months to see the results as we did not install them before the spring,” Gery said.

sfox@darientimes.com