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Pigeons are nuisance to local businesses – QNS.com

Pigeons are nuisance to local businesses

Business owner Kish Kishun says his store is a mess, but not through any fault of his own.
The Richmond Hill resident and operator of the Allstate Insurance agency on Liberty Avenue claims that the pigeons that perch and nest under the elevated “A” line are a nuisance.
“The pigeons poop all over the place,” he said. “It smells like crazy.”
Kishun says that the problem is exacerbated by the fact that locals feed the birds.
“People are feeding the pigeons and it’s making a mess,” said the director of the South Queens Boys & Girls Club. “It’s very terrible. I’m fed up.”
Currently, there is a bill before the City Council that would make feeding pigeons a crime punishable by up to a $1,000 fine.
Local Councilmember Joseph Addabbo says he was alerted to the problem recently.
“I’m on it,” he assured The Courier Sun. “The droppings can be a deterrent to shoppers. I have been in contact with the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) [and other city agencies], and we are working with the city to do something. I am hopeful that by the spring of 2008 or so something will be done.”
Addabbo explained that, “the city contracts with licensed exterminators to put up ‘needles’ to keep the pigeons from congregating.”
A spokesperson for New York City Transit confirmed this, telling The Courier Sun that the agency has two departments - the Government and Community Relations Division, and the Stations Division - and that they will work on the problem.
“I will ask the Stations Department to go out and take a look at the situation [at the 104th and 111th Street stations] and see if there is anything they can do to alleviate the situation in the interim - maybe a station wash or netting,” said Deirdre Parker.
She went on to explain that at numerous stations throughout Queens NYC Transit is installing “Shock Track,” which delivers a slight electric shock to the birds.
“It seems to be very good,” she said. “We are installing it in various outdoor stations. As many are renovated, we install [Shock Track]. Otherwise, we install it on a yearly basis at different stations.”
Nevertheless, aside from the nuisance of the pigeons, some locals are concerned about potential health hazards associated with their droppings.
According to the city’s Health Department, “There may be some risk of infection for people exposed to large quantities of pigeon droppings in an occupational setting, like a cleaning crew, so appropriate precautions should be taken. There’s little risk for people who clean small areas, such as windowsills.”

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