Deter-a-Pigeon Speaks Out Against Hollywood's Pigeon Birth Control Plans

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There have been many media reports in recent weeks regarding Hollywood's plans to distribute OvoControl P through the use of mechanised rooftop feeders. Deter-a-Pigeon with the backing of the Pigeon Control Advisory Service International (PiCAS International) are speaking out against the substance, which interferes with egg development, as an unproven, unsafe and ineffective method of attaining pigeon control.

After years of cleaning up pigeon feces and witnessing growing pigeon populations, Hollywood has taken a controversial measure to add OvoControl P to new rooftop feeders as a way to reduce these pigeon populations.

Deter-a-Pigeon, a manufacturer of humane pigeon control methods is on record as speaking out against using birth control as a method of pigeon control. They have the backing of PiCAS International, the leading non-scientific international authority on pigeon control, a group that is also very concerned with the tactics taken by the state and local officials. "There are many reasons OvoControl P concerns us as their method of choice for pigeon control. Firstly, trials undertaken in Europe in the 70s concluded that it was impossible to isolate feral flocks in order to assess whether contraceptives could be used to reduce breeding," comments Guy Merchant, Director of PiCAS International.

"Since feral pigeons use multiple daily feeding sites, and as the drug must be fed everyday, there is a very high chance that many birds belonging to the flock being targeted will not take the bait everyday. Irrespective of claims made by the manufacturer, it is simply not possible to draw any conclusions over the effectiveness of any contraceptive designed to be used for the control of feral bird populations," Merchant explains.

Along with the difficulty of ensuring that the flock takes the bait daily, there is a major concern that non-target species will consume the drug. "The manufacturer is suggesting that OvoControl P has been designed so that non-target species cannot take the bait due to the size and shape of the drug, but it is clear that larger birds will have no problem consuming the drug. Therefore, there is a major risk of rare and protected birds taking the bait," exclaims Merchant.

In addition to these major issues with utilizing OvoControl P to limit pigeon populations Deter-a-Pigeon has pointed out additional drawbacks concerning the human applicator administrating the drug. Strict protocols must be in place that includes the OvoControl being distributed early every morning, 365 days a year.

In addition, the human applicator must thoroughly assess pigeon activity on the site prior to distributing OvoControl P and undertake a pigeon head count each day in order to reduce or increase the volume of OvoControl P fed to the flock. Not only that, but they must also remain on site for up to one hour following distribution to ensure all bait is eaten and that non-target species do not come in contact. Another critical point is for the human applicator to ensure that children and pets are not exposed to the drug.

"Another concern about OvoControl P is the fact that the drug cannot be distributed in the rain, so the feeding area requires a canopy and specially designed feeding bowls in wet conditions. It needs to be swept up as soon as rain starts if there is no cover available. It is not clear as to the environmental implications if the drug enters the water system," Merchant continues.

It is the opinion of both Deter-a-Pigeon and PiCAS International that local and state officials for the Hollywood area had options beyond OvoControl P, as there are pigeon control methods such as artificial breeding facilities and rooftop deterrents that have been proven effective, safe and humane.

As the only independent and non-commercial body worldwide specializing in non-lethal and humane pigeon control methods, with an emphasis on area wide systems, PiCAS International has seen first hand that safe and humane methods such as these have been very effective in reducing pigeon populations.

Anyone interested in learning more about employing humane pigeon control solutions in their area is encouraged to Deter-a-Pigeon for further information.

About Deter-a-Pigeon:
For 10 years, Deter-a-Pigeon has been a leader in safe pigeon spike solutions in the UK. In 1995, David Jones, Director of Deter-a-Pigeon invented and patented the Defender 4 pigeon spikes which safely deter pigeons without harming them. This still remains the only pest control product recommended by the Pigeon Control Advisory Service (PiCAS).

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