City crews pester crows with pistols and pellets

November 8, 2018

Rochester is starting its annual fight with the crows.

The city’s Park and Recreation Department plans an intensified three-month effort to disperse crows, a process that has taken place for several years.

With each successive year of efforts, since 2013, there have been fewer and fewer complaints regarding the crow nuisance,” said Mike Nigbur, the park and forestry division head. “Our work has not eliminated the issues, but it has seemed to disperse the crow population where it has become less problematic by comparison of when we started our concentrated efforts in 2012.”

This year’s abatement activities will be similar to past years for hours of operation and locations. Depending on the demand or need, one- or two-person crews will work from late afternoon through the completion of a work shift on week days. No work is planned for weekends or holidays.

The crews will use various techniques — distress calls, lights, lasers, Airsoft pellets, and starter pistols — to unsettle the crows.

As in other years, the focus of the abatement work will be in the downtown core, the department reports. Some activities will occur on the fringe areas of downtown to dissuade crows from entering downtown.

The abatement activity will be secondary to snow removal or other high-priority assignments, according to the department.

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