12/30/2012 03:54 EST | Updated 03/01/2013 05:12 EST

Southern Alberta RCMP investigate shooting of Canada geese near field

FORT MACLEOD, Alta. - RCMP in southern Alberta are investigating a suspected poaching incident in which five Canada geese were shot and left in a pile near a field on the outskirts of Fort Macleod.

Mounties say the birds were found near a construction site on Saturday night.

The hunting season for Canada geese ended on Dec. 21.

It's believed the birds were shot and left after that date.

Const. Jason Smith says the discovery was made by someone out walking in the area.

Smith says farmers in the area are not particularly fond of the birds, but he can't see what problems they would have been posing in -30 C wind chills.

"Personally, I don't know what would be the draw to them," says Smith. "I've never heard anybody say that a Canada goose is something good to eat.

"Apparently for the farmers around the area, they're considered more as pests. But at this point of year, I really don't understand how they could really be bugging anybody or their crops."