Pest pigeons to be eradicated

Hamilton Lake’s pigeon population will be culled in night operations by trained pest control marksmen using spotlights and silenced air rifles.

The first of the culls, subject to weather, is planned for December 9-13.

Hamilton City Council’s parks and open spaces manager, Sally Sheedy said the operation will focus on the Hamilton Lake Domain, where feral pigeons have become a problem and present a risk to the health and safety of the public.

‘‘The pigeons roost in the mature Phoenix Palms at the domain, and it’s their excrement which creates a health and safety issue,’’ said Ms Sheedy. ‘‘The pigeons’ excrement is adversely affecting the Domain’s Phoenix Palms.’’

‘‘The excrement is unsanitary, smelly and slippery, and it’s building up on footpaths and picnic tables. It also has the potential to transmit diseases.’’

 Ms Sheedy said pest control firm Rentokil would carry out the cull. Its staff members were professional marksmen who would use silenced air rifles.

 The cull will be undertaken across six nights in December after the domain is closed to the public, and the fallen pigeons removed immediately.

Waikato Times