Feltham Green, which had its pond completely dredged and then re-filled has now employed the services of a beautiful Peregrine
Published: Thursday, 23rd January 2020
Feltham Green, which had its pond completely dredged and then re-filled with fresh water and rehoused with new fish late last year, has now employed the services of a beautiful Peregrine to clear the entire area of pigeons.
Birds of prey have successfully deterred nuisance birds at all kinds of places; these include hospitals, schools, hotels and some Thames Water sites. The birds will be under the watchful eye of Falconer Martin Cattell who has over 40 years’ experience of handling different types of birds of prey.
Martin said: “I will be visiting Feltham Green a couple of days a week with my birds and am very confident of deterring pigeons form this location while the birds of prey are flying. I will deliberately come on different days each week so the pigeons don’t get used to it all happening on similar days. My birds include a 16-year-old Harris hawk called Katie, a lovely six-year-old Peregrine called TJ and a Goshawk called Dave. The whole process could take several months, but people will start to see the difference straightaway.”
As part of the campaign, Hounslow Council also invited children from St Lawrence Catholic Primary School, immediately next door to the Green, to design a poster to deter local people from feeding the birds. The competition attracted about 500 entries with the winning entry coming from nine-year-old Michael from Feltham. His poster, along with the five runners-up, will be temporary displayed on site. The winning design will be used around the pond as the main ‘Do Not Feed The Birds’ signage. The top 100 entries will be on display in Feltham Library from 1 February.
Cllr Steve Curran, Leader of Hounslow Council said he was delighted with the response from the local children: “Firstly, a big thank you to the Art Teacher Priya Sharma for organising the competition and persuading virtually the entire school to enter the competition. Some of the entries are absolutely amazing and well done to Michael for winning. It just goes to show, how children are already engaged with important environmental issues such as this one.
“Pigeons are part of urban wildlife but when in high numbers can cause issues and damage. The droppings are known for triggering slips and falls as well as accelerating the aging structures on the green. The deliberate feeding of pigeons is a problem for booming the bird’s population and can also attract vermin such as rats. This is why we are making an effort in deterring people from feeding the pigeons and we are employing the services of magnificent birds of prey. Martin the Falconer tells me they worked wonders at places such as hospitals and schools so I am really looking forward to seeing how they get on here in Feltham.”