Agents to start addressing Woodstock vultures

Agents will be in Woodstock on Monday to start efforts to chase vultures from the area.

The town signed a contract with the U.S. Department of Agriculture recently for the officers to address vultures in various areas through out the town with expenditures not to exceed $10,000.

The action was taken after town officials received six complaints in six months, up from the one to two calls received in the previous couple years.

Vultures can kill vulnerable livestock and animals, they can damage property and their feces can be odorous.

Agents could be in the area for a couple weeks, mainly working in the evening hours as vultures start to roost, Chad Fox, Wildlife Biologist and supervisor with United States Department of Agriculture Wildlife Services, previously said.

As a start, they are planning on using pyrotechnics to chase away with the birds. Agents will evaluate Monday where the pyrotechnics will be deployed. An area in the 200 block of West North Street is a possibility, said Lemuel Hancock, urban designer and neighborhood planner with the town.

Other counter measures such as shooting or using vulture effigies at roost sites could also be used, according to the contract.

Vultures are a federally protected species. A permit is required to trap, kill, relocate or handle the birds or their eggs.