As regular CFZ-watchers will know, for some time Corinna has been doing a column for Animals & Men and a regular segment on On The Track... particularly about out-of-place birds and rare vagrants. There seem to be more and more bird stories from all over the world hitting the news these days so, to make room for them all - and to give them all equal and worthy coverage - she has set up this new blog to cover all things feathery and Fortean.

Thursday, 26 November 2015

Rome enlists Texan falcons to tackle problem of starling droppings

Cars, streets and the odd pedestrian have been showered with faeces

Rome is hoping five Texan falcons will be able scare away the thousands of starlings that are showering cars, streets, and the odd pedestrian with their droppings.

Along the banks of the River Tiber, in particular, where the huge flocks congregate in the trees, stationary cars and bikes are often covered in their faeces. Roads are left slippery and treacherous.

So serious is the problem that the city’s authorities are resorting to the falcons to deter the starlings from massing in the city, to which they are attracted as a safe place to roost. 

Sabrina Alfonsi, president of Rome’s central municipality, said a three-day trial of the birds of prey proved successful, so she is now looking to continue with the deterrent.

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