Howard County Maryland Blog

Local Politics and Current Events

The Vultures are Back in Long Reach.

Posted by Ed C on Saturday, December 30, 2006

Vulture2-detail

I woke up this morning and saw vultures circling in my backyard. Okay, maybe not a good sign to start the day or the new year, but I’ve been here before.

Last year the neighborhood saw about 200 of these federally protected birds take up temporary residence, and it started the same way, with 20 or so “scout troops.” The birds have wingspans up to six feet but are not considered harmful to humans or pets. However, they do make a mess and they did damage roofs and some cars.

Last year, their favorite roost was in the Gable townhome community. Because of their protected status, there was not much the community could do except try to scare the birds away. Meetings were held and experts were consulted and after a while they put up some spotlights to shine into the favorite roosting trees and they used starter pistols in the evening to convince them to move along. I’ll bet the Gable’s residence will be out in force tonight to try to stop this before it gets started again.

The Columbia Flyer and a few of the local TV stations covered the issue.

Personally, I found the vultures an interesting addition. I’d be walking the dog in the morning and there would be 20 – 50 birds staring at us from the trees and the houses along our morning path. “See – still moving, no food here, don’t mind us” and we never had a problem, but then they were not damaging my property. I can’t find the quote, but one of the Gable’s residents used to wake up and have the vultures staring down on the bed from the skylight – yep, that’s a good way to start the day.

Two larger pictures available below the fold.

Vulture1-ground

Vulture-tree

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