Friday, February 04, 2005

"Starling" Disbursal

An email I got today:

"Starling" Population Dispersal Operations

Plant Operations will be conducting "Starling" dispersal operations starting on the evening of Friday, February 11 through the evening of Tuesday, February 15. Operations hours will be as follows: Evening Operations: 4:30 - 6:00 PM Morning Operations: 6:00 - 6:30 AM Operations will take place at the following locations, the Stadium North End Zone in the vicinity of the Parmer Field House and Health Plus, North End Zone Park, and along Garland and Highland Avenues sidewalks. Starlings are well known for their large flocks, creating problems when roosting in populated areas. When the bird is in its flocking phase, thousands of starlings often overwhelm buildings and trees. Our [redacted] Magnolia trees are the perfect roosting location for them. Large-scale buildup of droppings from these flocks can lead to structural damage, and create health hazards. The targeted locations above are where the starling concentration is causing the more serious problem on campus. Plant Operations crews will be employing humane dispersal techniques that are recommended by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Devices used include recorded distress calls, pyrotechnics, automatic gas exploders, lights, and low intensity laser beams. The intent of these techniques is to manipulate the bird concentrations by scaring them and reducing the attractiveness of the roost.

I've been laughing about this email now, throughout lunch. First it's the putting "starling" in quotes, as if it's a euphemism for something else. Wink, wink, we're going to get rid of the "starlings." Then it's the thought of all our underpaid Plant Operations guys running around like an army of James Bonds, with their recorded distress calls, firecrackers, and laser beams. Shoot, what's next? Cats with jet packs to hunt them down and eat them?

1 Comments:

Blogger the Professor said...

and humane treatment is anything that does not cause physical harm (of course, things on fire could do that)

2/05/2005 11:45:00 AM  

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