March 2, 2011
When it began a little over two years ago, there were several distinct flocks of pigeons in the Walla Walla downtown core area and on the campus of Whitman College, collectively numbering somewhere in the ballpark of six to seven dozen birds. The feeding program began with two feeders, one stationed on a rooftop in the downtown area and one on a dorm on the Whitman campus.
Fast forward to now – after a few minor feeder repositionings (we needed to go to a higher roof with the Whitman feeder to a spot without overlooking windows so the birds would not see so much human traffic) and a program of scarecrow deployment and pellet rifle work, it’s like someone flipped a switch and turned the birds off. The downtown core area flocks are now the downtown flock, which typically numbers only a dozen or so birds at any given time, give or take a few. The flock that used to inhabit the building where the Whitman feeder is located now doesn’t exist; instead, flocks from neighboring areas show up at feeding time, which has resulted in the reported disappearance of a flock that roosted in the campus clock tower (this is a considerable distance from where the campus feeder is placed).
There are three feeders deployed at this point, the original two plus another that was placed near to the roosting site of a flock outside of the Walla Walla downtown core area. The multi-pronged approach I am taking to keeping the birds to a tolerable minimum would not work if I did not have OvoControl to limit the reproductive capacity of these flocks as part of the strategy. Nearby habitat that favors pigeon populations constantly supplies more birds (grain elevators and the like), which would make my rifle work and use of scarecrows largely ineffective, I believe. Using the product enables me to stay ahead of the birds, enabling the success of the program overall.
Walla Walla Region Manager, Sun Pest Management