Caw. Caw. Caw.

crows sky albany twilight 2015-02-17

With the return of cold weather, the huge flocks of crows that roost in urban areas have also show up. And once again there is an effort to disperse them.

The USDA trucks are set to start rolling through the city of Albany November 16 and 17 in the late afternoon and early evening. From a press release:

The non-lethal dispersal will be conducted by wildlife biologists from the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, Wildlife Services, part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. They will be driving marked vehicles and wearing uniforms and a yellow safety vest marked "USDA Wildlife Services." The work will be repeated at two-week intervals throughout winter where roosts develop.
The non-lethal methods used to disperse crows include pyrotechnics, spotlights, non-harmful lasers, and recorded crow distress calls that are amplified. Several of these methods produce loud noises and flashing lights similar to sirens and fireworks that frighten birds and may be heard or observed by local residents.
Residents are strongly encouraged to place household trash in containers with lids to discourage crows from feeding. Residents may also use bright flashlights to disperse crows roosting in trees.

The crows can cause problems, as the press release notes, "because of their droppings and the ruckus they create." But we've come to appreciate their presence in winter -- they make the city feel more alive somehow. And there's some beauty in watching the flocks cross the sky at dusk.

Also: Crows are very smart. And maybe having a good relationship with them will pay off during the inevitable avian uprising.

Comments

'The crows can cause problems, as the press release notes, "because of their droppings and the ruckus they create."' ... Ruckus, indeed. #teamcrow

We love the crows! Flashing lights and fireworks seem more disruptive to me than the crows do.

Beware.

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