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Neighbors concerned over controversial method to remove pigeons
Residents in a northwest community are questioning a way to get rid of pigeons in their neighborhood. Video by ktnv.comvideo
Las Vegas, NV (KTNV) -- Residents in one northwest community are questioning a way to get rid of pigeons in their neighborhood.
Plans call for a pesticide and neighbors want to know why they weren't notified about it.
The pesticide is called Avitrol, and it's used throughout the nation. But neighbors think any community should get a heads up before it's used, and they're willing to take their case to the state capitol.
Jason Smith is worried about his two boys or cat could come in contact with Avitrol.
The process works through kernels used as bait, and then they're eventually mixed with the pesticide.
Smith turned to Action News to find out why he wasn't notified about it, "I get that there's a problem; however, if they're going to use Avitrol, I strongly feel and believe they need to let the community know where they're using it so we can protect ourselves."
Jeanette Matison also lives nearby, "I'm really concerned about our environment. I really think that when we poison pigeons, there are other birds that have the possibility of maybe eating that same food and dying."
Avitrol is controversial. On its website, PETA says Avitrol is "acutely toxic and causes birds and other animals to suffer immensely." But the manufacturer points to a 1979 study on its website that says "Avitrol appears to be humane, based on scientific evidence" and says the birds are not in pain.
Action News wanted to find out why residents weren't made aware of its planned use, so we made some calls. The Agriculture Department says HOAs or pest control companies are not required to notify residents in advance, but can do so voluntarily.
Companies using the chemical must be licensed and follow state safety guidelines, removing dead birds and cleaning up unused corn that has the pesticide.
Smith has started a petition and created a website, calling on the county to require pest control companies to notify residents within a five-mile radius of plans to use Avitrol.
"We're willing to take it as far as Carson City, if necessary, to get the restrictions on this use in our state," said Smith.
Action News was told Avitrol could be used in this community, which is near North Durango and the 215, within a week.
Smith said he's already collected several dozen signatures for his petition.
For more information on Avitrol, click here.