St Paul Hatching Stupid Idea for Dealing with Pigeons

Rock Dove, Columba livia.

Image source.

Anyone who knows anything about birds will tell you that St. Paul is hatching a stupid idea for dealing with its pigeon overpopulation problem. According to the Associated Press, the "smelly mess is gaining urgency" -- so much so that the city is planning to steal pigeon eggs to avoid an ugly display at the Republican National Convention next year.

"Sticky foam, hawk balloons and nets haven't gotten rid of the birds," wrote AP, "so officials have a new plan: stealing pigeon eggs."

What's wrong with this picture? If the city officials are serious about reducing the pigeon population problem, they would addle the eggs instead and return them to the birds' nests, so the hen continues incubating instead of immediately laying a replacement clutch of eggs. Granted, the hen will eventually catch on that her nest is infertile, stop incubating and then lay a replacement clutch of eggs, but this takes more time than simply replacing a missing clutch of eggs.

"We'll build them little condos," Bill Stephenson, the city's animal control supervisor, told the wire service. We'll keep taking the eggs, and they won't have little ones. ... Slowly they'll die off."

Furthermore, I hope they know that pigeons nest on ledges, not inside "condos". This could be a problem if the city officials think that the birds will change their nesting habits to accomodate egg thieves.

City officials might also want to make it illegal for people to feed pigeons -- and good luck with that!

Cited story.

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Let me get this straight, they want to solve the problem by next year. So, they want to tackle a bird that lives 3-5 years by reducing reproduction. So, assuming they somehow stop all recruitment, they will get a 20%-33% reduction by next year, at most.

Are the guys doing this democrats?


BOB! i am shocked, i tell you, simply shocked! bad boy. bad bad boy. no easter eggs for you!

well, if they were republicans they would have dispatched someone with little interest or experience in animal control but a keen loyalty to republican interests to harass all of animal control employees and spout christian dogma at them until they quit in disgust.
oops, sorry. That was the US Attorney in Minneapolis.
my mistake.

Lots of pigeons crapping on Republicans.

Odd- I can't see the problem in that.

By Ktesibios (not verified) on 06 Apr 2007 #permalink

What odds they end up killing pigeons en masse, get caught at it, and make things worse with their excuses? After all, death and deceit are the other two watchwords for the Republicans! (After profit. of course!)

By David Harmon (not verified) on 06 Apr 2007 #permalink

St. Paul is trying to solve a population problem by increasing the rate of termination of embryo incubations for the benefit of the Republican Party?

Does anyone else see an irony in this?

St. Paul's skyway system seems designed specifically for pigeons to nest in. There are nice pigeon size ledges along the length of them with sheltered niches every few feet so pigeons can take shelter from the hawks who nest on the tops of buildings. It is fun to walk along the skyway and see the nests through the glass.

Worse than having pigeons poop all over is finding the pigeon heads and feet that the hawks leave littered around.

By parrotslave (not verified) on 06 Apr 2007 #permalink

Ktesibios - I guess you're not getting any Easter eggs either.

Hmm, I wonder. Can we genetically engineer pigeons to make chocolate eggs?


Republican Jesus is particularly offended that you are making light of his Big Weekend anniversary. No Easter eggs and no dot com stock for any of you. Your futures-market wagers on his second coming have all been called. Like George W. Bush, He will come like a thief in the night to tax the poor and salve the rich and their televangelists. The first shall be first and the last shall be last. If you go knocking on His door, be assured you will have to knock some more. There will be wars and rumors of weapons of mass destruction. Whenever two or three of you gather together in His name, there will the FBI be also. God gave Noah the rainbow sign, no more rain, Republicans next time.

By biosparite (not verified) on 07 Apr 2007 #permalink