Latest News: On 25 February 2016, the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority of Singapore (AVA) launched a new method to repel mynahs in Clementi and Yishun by fogging (a harmless chemical - which has methylated soybean oil and grape extract). To find out more on this story click here.
SPCA is of the belief that poisoning of pigeons is cruel and inhumane and urges the members of the public and the Town Councils to consider humane alternative methods of bird control.
Culling of the pigeons as a means of bird population control, is not effective. A case in point is a culling programme conducted in Basel, Switzerland, a city which had a population of approximately 20,000 pigeons. From 1961 to 1985, about 100,000 pigeons were culled by shooting and trapping. Despite this, the population remained stable (Source: Animal Aid, UK).
In comparison, in 1988 a group called Pigeon Action was founded to provide an ecological and long-term solution to Basel’s pigeon issue. They implemented a programme of public education campaigns which warned against feeding pigeons and installed pigeon lofts from which eggs were removed. As a result, the population was halved within four years.
In 2008, the SPCA attended a scene of pigeon poisoning, where we retrieved several birds that were reported unconscious and others that were having difficulty flying. Had they been left in the environment in this state, they would have been susceptible to road accidents or been attacked by predators. Being disposed of in bags to suffocate, while still alive, was an additional issue in this case, that SPCA had to deal with.
Poisoning puts other species at risk too (no matter what precautions are taken) and the case of the deaths of cats and birds at Pasir Ris Park reported in the media in July 2015 comes to mind.
It is evident that culling, and specifically poisoning, is an inhumane method of animal management. Performing the exercise in a public place and leaving dying birds in plain sight of the public (including young children) may also desensitise people to the very act of killing and the suffering of the animals.
To us this method of pigeon control must stop to prevent any further suffering.
There are many other humane alternatives to averting pigeons like using B-ST, a bird-control gel-type solution that is reportedly among the most efficient and innovative in the Japanese market (http://bird-deterrent.com.sg/solutions.php) and being used in Singapore currently.
On 6 November 2015, a new drug trial by AVA to curb pigeon population by using contraception in bird feed. Find out more on this story here.
Let’s say ‘NO’ to poisoning our pigeons and stop animal abuse.