LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — People living in a southwest Las Vegas apartment complex said they woke up to dead pigeons on the ground Tuesday morning, sparking concerns about safety for their pets and children over the method of pest control that might have been used.
Despite the sweltering heat, Dustin Corbridge did not leave the courtyard of the Esplanade Condominiums all day on Tuesday.
"I came out here to do my best in making sure no more pigeons landed in the area,” said Corbridge.
The area was peppered with dead pigeons. Corbridge said it all began on Monday.
"Actually, it started last night at around 5 p.m. Birds already falling out of the sky,” said Corbridge. “And they were all on the sidewalk. And on the ground. And some of them were like shaking to death."
He shared a video with 13 Action News that he said shows a pigeon convulsing as he tries to comfort it before its inevitable death. We don't know what killed the pigeon for sure, but he believes it was poisoned with Avitrol.
"It's cheaper to poison than it is to do humanely things to take care of pigeon populations,” said Corbridge.
13 Action News asked Trent English of Truly Nolen Pest Control to explain what Avitrol is and what it does.
“Avitrol in and of itself is poisoned corn,” said English. “It affects the nervous system. Its like a psychotropic. So, it sends a signal of fear as the one pigeon has ingested this poison corn sends a signal of fear to the flock or group and it just freaks all of them out."
English said Avitrol is tightly regulated by the Nevada Department of Agriculture and must be well monitored because it can poison other birds and animals.
13 Action News reached out to the management company for Esplanade Condominiums. A spokesperson, Joseph Ventura, with Taylor Association Management emailed the following statement:
Over the course of the past month, we have received multiple complaints regarding the increasing number of pigeons between buildings 15 & 16 at the Esplanade Condominiums.
Due to these continual reports, the licensed pest control company contracted by Esplanade Condominiums was informed of the situation with the expectation that they would take the appropriate steps to mitigate the problem in safe and humane manner.
We have been informed that steps were taken to provide advance notice to the residents of the proposed treatment and advising them to temporarily avoid the areas. We understand that remedy used is a common and approved method to address pigeon problems by most local pest control firms. The most common result is that pigeons will move on from the treated area, thus mitigating the residents’ concerns. Today our office received several calls reporting dead pigeons in the community. Our on site maintenance staff has been instructed to sweep the community to remove the remains as quickly as possible.
We are actively gathering as much information about this incident as possible. We are committed to ensuring the safety of our residents and their families.