News

Our pigeon plague is making feathers fly

by
October 13, 2017

John Ferris cleans a pigeon nest from the Uniting Church roof. Photo by Luke Hemer.

ECHUCA’S pigeon plague is no flight of fancy according to those on the frontline fighting increasing numbers of birds and worsening volumes of pigeon droppings.

It might not be in the asbestos category but there is no doubt a health risk exists because of the makeup of the bird’s droppings.

Echuca-Moama Uniting Church is now praying for intervention – divine would be fine but in the temporal space church spokesman John Ferris would be really happy if Campaspe Shire got in the game.

His church has spent close to $30,000 for temporary relief from the problem but several other large buildings in that part of town – from Campaspe College of Adult Education and the Backpackers to the Paramount Cinema to the old fire station – are facing the same problems.

“It has been suggested we could fix this problem by installing things such as spikes and ultrasonic bird repellers,” Mr Ferris said.

“We have such a repeller, it is 20 times the size suggested by Barry McDougal in a letter to the editor in the Riv,” he said.

“It’s on the church roof and it does work in the area that the speaker’s sound reaches – so the pigeons have shuffled along and now perch just outside the range of the sound.”

Mr Ferris said there is a nesting pair of peregrine falcons in the church tower and they are enthusiastically doing their bit, but at a pigeon a day they are being outbred.

“It is our hope the shire council can provide support and leadership in assisting the occupiers of affected properties (of which there are many) in an eradication process,” he said.

“We can disturb the birds nesting and roosting positions on our roof, but we are unable to rid ourselves of them totally without such council support.

“We have a request in with the shire asking for their leadership and support on this. Our thinking is an eradication program led by them on behalf of property owners; who should be asked to bear associated costs.

“But we haven’t heard anything yet.”

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