Pigeon numbers in Christchurch park ‘reminiscent of horror film’

Pigeons above Dorothy Gosser’s Memorial Ave home and across the road at Burnside Park are a...
Pigeons above Dorothy Gosser’s Memorial Ave home and across the road at Burnside Park are a concern for her, but not the city council. Photo: Supplied
Dorothy Gosser says the number of pigeons at Burnside Park is like a scene from Alfred Hitchcock’s 1963 horror film The Birds.

Gosser thinks the pigeon numbers are increasing and says her house across the road on Memorial Ave has become covered in their droppings and feathers.

Trees at Burnside Park are also being damaged by the birds, she said.

She has contacted Christchurch City Council about six times in the last two years trying to get staff to get rid of the pigeons, but nothing has been done.

But the city council says there is no problem with pigeons in Burnside Park or on Memorial Ave, and it does not have plans to remove them from the areas.

Said Gosser: “I am so fed up with them [pigeons] and so are my neighbours.

"I counted 53 pigeons on one side of the pylon [above her house] a week or so ago and there was just as many on the other side.

"They’re nesting in the oak trees in the middle of Memorial Ave, as well as in the park.

"My yard’s covered in feathers, my red bin and my garbage bins are covered in bird droppings.

"It’s all over the place and the council has done nothing about it. It’s absolutely ridiculous.

"They [city council staff] should be controlling them.

"I’m now respiratory compromised and I’ve got to be very careful about infections, and the last thing I need is to be picking up something from cleaning up bird rubbish."

City council community parks manager Al Hardy said the council has only received two complaints about the number of pigeons in Burnside Park in the last two years and four across Christchurch.

"The number of complaints and absence of damage at Burnside Park/Memorial Ave does not indicate there is an issue with pigeons.

"Following ranger inspections, no damage to trees or excess fowling caused by pigeons was found.

"The council parks unit does not consider the current number of pigeons to be an issue," he said.

Gosser is disappointed with this response and said the issue needs to be addressed.

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