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Peacocks not a health hazard

‘It does not appear that there is any more of a public health concern than that of the natural/wild animal population in the area.’

Hiren.info

MELISSA REID
Associate Publisher
mreid@lbknews.com

The Manatee County Health Department has found that peacocks are not a health hazard.

The Town Commission at its last workshop directed staff to request that the Health Department look into whether the peacocks in the Village were creating enough feces to be considered a health hazard.

According to Tom Larkin, environmental manager for the Manatee County Health Department, the peafowl droppings were not significant enough to cause a health hazard.

“The purpose of our site visit was to investigate the possibility that the peacock population in the Village is causing a sanitary nuisance as defined in Chapter 386 Florida Statutes. In summary I did not observe conditions created by the peacock bird population that represented a sanitary nuisance,” wrote Larkin in his report.

While touring the Village, Larkin wrote that he talked with two residents. The group walked down Russell and Fox Streets, and then drove the area from Lands End to the public boat launch.

“During the time on site, we were looking for bird feces and the accumulation of such. Although some feces were observed on sidewalks and driveways at selected residences, the quantity was very sparse, and the material dried out and desiccated from the sun,” wrote Larkin.

Larkin also looked in the Australian pines at the corner of Poinsettia and Fox streets, where the birds were alleged to be nesting, but did not find any feces at that location either. Larkin summarized that the peacocks did not pose any more of a health concern than other wild animals in the area.

One concern raised in an e-mail by Town Commissioner Patricia Zunz was that many residents hose down their driveways, which removes any bird droppings. Larkin made note of that fact in his records, but it did not change his findings — there did not appear to be a significant enough amount of droppings to be considered a health hazard.

Past peafowl problems
The birds have been a point of contention over the years, and the Village Association has sought to limit the flock to 12 birds. Some Village residents consider the birds a nice addition to the area to be admired and enjoyed, while others have found their noise, droppings and pecking of everything to be a nuisance.

One Village resident stated at a recent commission meeting that he has had to replace a roof, car paint, screens and flowers.

At the same commission meeting, Village resident James Braha placed the blame for the peacock overpopulation on the shoulders of former Village Association President Michael Drake, who has now stepped down from the position. Braha says Drake has dropped the ball when it comes to culling the flock and relocating the birds.

The town has allocated approximately $2,400 in the budget to reimburse the Village Association for the cost of culling the flock to 12 birds. Some estimates place the population of the peacocks at 70 birds.

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2 Responses for “Peacocks not a health hazard”

  1. William Kary says:

    That would make way to much sense to the Commission. Let’s just spend $2400 based on a couple of individual’s complaints who obviously have some “sway” with the Town and WAY to much time on their hands. What’s next, crow eradication? People buy a house in a bird sanctuary and then want to get rid of the birds.

  2. Al Janssens says:

    Here is an easy, safe and effective way to slowly control the population of peacocks in ‘The Village’.

    Birth Control. It is used to cut back on pigeon populations in major international cities. Just keep those females fed…and sit back and watch nothing happen….won’t prevent a few slipping through the feed line…but in the end…a few peacocks is not what the complaint is.

    Now, about putting diapers on dolphins…..A.J.

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