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LAS VEGAS, Nev. -- They are everywhere, flocks of trouble, invading neighborhoods and, in some cases, ruining business. They're pigeons and they need policing. Now, one company claims to have the answer.
How about scooping up pigeons with your bare hands and taking them to a kill-free sanctuary to live out their days? It may seem like a radical approach to what some see as a "flying rat" problem.
When there is a question on how to deal with pigeons, the answer can be found with Nathaniel Blood and Nephi Oliva, the pigeon police.
"We have figured out the pigeons."
Oliva is part businessman, part bounty hunter and part-time pigeon psychologist.
"Pigeons don't think the same way we do about things," he said.
His company, Nevada Pigeon Control doesn't use poisons, traps or shock strips. Instead, it's a humane approach. The patrol wears dark clothing and goes out at night to hunt the birds. Grabbing a pigeon can become second nature, they say. Their tactics have attracted an unusual fan. Former North Las Vegas Mayor Mike Montandon.
"It's become more and more fascinating to me," he said. His city is no stranger to the effects of pigeons. He wants tactics to match the adversary.
"For such a, pardon my language, disgusting animal, they're remarkably smart," Montandon said.
Once caught, the pigeons are taken to the pigeon sanctuary. This is no prison though. Even with the door wide open, the birds go nowhere.
"They don't want to go anywhere. Food's too good here," said Nephi.
Oliva takes pride in his new approach because it is saving and preserving the pigeons yet taking them off the streets. He says those who want these animals dead should think twice.
"Come out here to the sanctuary. I'll let you in," he said.
The pigeon patrol says the problem are the alpha males which head the flocks. They are smart and aggressive and sometimes they must be put down, only to leave the rest of the flock vulnerable to safe and calm removal.
One small sacrifice, they say, and better than killing every single bird.
If the sanctuary gets too full, there is land in rural Nevada where they plan to build a large pigeon sanctuary.