Another Hare Brained Pigeon Removal Scheme

From the Pioneer Press:

A longtime loser in the war against pigeons, St. Paul City Hall is gearing up for another battle.

This time, city warriors hope a new tactic will turn the tide against the downtown menaces. Their plan: Lure the birds to new rooftop nesting grounds and then steal their eggs.

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

The pigeon problem is just one of many housecleaning chores the city is tackling in advance of the Republican National Convention, which will come to the Xcel Energy Center next year. Flocks of pigeons have laid down their glop on skyway ledges and sidewalks and have sullied downtown's image, officials and property owners say.

Stephenson said he's not entirely sure the "condo" scheme will work, but he's willing to try anything. In the past, the city has turned to sticky foam, blow-up hawk balloons and a notorious trapping program in the late 1980s.

Netting the birds was a bust - in practical and public relations terms. After capturing thousands of pigeons, the collectors handed the birds over to gun clubs for target practice. That didn't fly with animal-rights activists. Not to mention, it was ineffective.

"What we learned is that you can't control the number of pigeons by killing them. They're like rats - they just reproduce," said Bob Kessler, the city's director of licensing, inspections and environmental protection. "You have to learn how to co-exist with them."

Mayor Chris Coleman ordered Kessler to lead the charge against the feathered loiterers. Kessler has requested that the city pay $280,000 for pigeon reduction and other skyway improvements, including paint jobs and better signs.

You can read the rest of the story here. Yeah, this totally sounds like it will work. Sigh, do they think that pigeons live less than a year and won't come back next year? Do they think Minneapolis pigeons won't come over to fill in the gap of the missing St Paul pigeons? Do they really need to spend $280,000 on a plan that the average birder could tell them won't work? Do they think all these politicians have never seen pigeon poop before in their lives?

Another reason why I'm glad I'm on the Minneapolis side of the Twin Cities and not St. Paul. Oh, St Paul, will you ever learn? I'm not opposed to curbing a pigeon population, I would just like to see a sensible plan in place.