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      Pigeons posing problems to people in Hannibal

      Pigeons are causing a surge of complaints in Hannibal and some p eople in the downtown area are complaining about the flocks of pigeons that are living in some of the taller buildings.

      Now t he Hannibal City Council has a plan that will see the flocks flying away from the downtown area and hopefully from all of Hannibal.

      So as you t ake a drive through parts of the downtown area in Hannibal and this is what you will see, flocks of pigeons making themselves at home and to some those birds are becoming a nuisance.

      So after hearing complaints and debating which way to go, the Hannibal City Council has decided to bait the birds with a poison.

      " This would definitely be a high communication process with the public, so when those days the traps are baited with the toxin. Those people in the public would know it and the next day would be when some of the pigeons laying around. Like I said, the goal isn't to kill pigeons, the goal is to frighten off the flock," Hannibal City Manager Jeff LaGarce said.

      Joe Chaplin lives near the downtown area and he knows how much of a pain these pigeons can be.

      " Oh yeah they make a lot of mess on a lot of things. On cars and a lot of things. They are a nuisance and I think it would be a good idea," Chaplin said.

      The city also heard from USDA about a program they perform that would see the birds shot with pellets. But LaGarce said after some research, the council decided to go with the bait traps. He said the mortality rate with the bait traps is much lower then using guns and pellets. He also said the idea is to get the birds to move out of the area and not exterminate them.

      " Yeah even on the sidewalk project we're building, we had some people who didn't want the treescape project that we're putting in with the downtown sidewalks, because "what about the pigeons?" They're defecating on cars and on people and they're a nuisance," LaGarce said.

      The program would see the traps baited with corn to start with and after a few weeks, the poison would be introduced into the sites where the bait has been set.

      LaGarce said one company that previously contacted the city is no longer interested in the job.

      He plans to contact another company that has expressed an interest in signing the contract.