Business owners and officials think the sea gulls and pigeons in the Redondo Beach waterfront area are pests—food thieves, who “carry or transmit bacteria” and poop everywhere. So earlier this week, the city did something about it, inking a contract with On the Wings Falconry Services to have owls and falcons make flights along the beach area and intimidate the unwanted birds, says the Daily Breeze. “All I have to do is walk on the beach with him, and sea gulls see them and they’ll go berserk,” says one of the falconers, motioning to the live Eurasian eagle-owl on her arm at a Redondo Beach City Council meeting this week.
And it’s really just scaring they’re hoping to do: “to avoid any incidental viewings of mother nature at work,” all the falconer’s birds will be “well-fed” before they go on patrol. (Because maybe the only thing less fun than getting pooped on by a sea gull at the beach is watching a sea gull be killed and consumed by an owl.)
The birds of prey will be flying over their new turf pretty regularly—the falconry service and Redondo Beach have a contract that states that the raptors will fly the designated area four times a week. Later, that will be reduced to maybe just two days a week. The whole intimidation process should take two months, and is expected to cost $70,000. Falconers have successfully helped keep bird pests away from the Palos Verdes Peninsula’s high-end Terranea Resort and spots on Catalina Island.
· Owls and falcons hired to scare pesky birds away from Redondo Beach waterfront [DB]