Crow harassment gets crows out of downtown Rochester - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

Crow harassment gets crows out of downtown Rochester

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ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) -- For five nights starting on Dec. 3, eight USDA wildlife biologists used a series of crow harassment techniques including lasers and pyrotechnics against crows in downtown Rochester.

Now, those who live and work downtown said they haven't really seen the crows fly back to their former roosting spots yet.

"The number of people and the consistency of the effort is what yielded benefit," said Doug Knott, Rochester Development Administrator.

The crows likely aren't gone for good however. While downtown businesses said they have yet to see the flocks they are used to, Knott said he has noticed a slow return.

So the city will continue the efforts with one member of the City Parks Department instead of the eight biologists. After a week, the city will reevaluate to see what else is needed.

"It certainly worked for the week they were here, the test is going to be what it's like moving forward," Knott said.

But where did the crows go? Knott said they've spread out more throughout the city in smaller groups, many of them heading to northwest Rochester -- in the Elton Hills neighborhood and further north. Knott said as long as they're more spread out -- that's a good thing.

"If they're in your back yard and they're not creating any problem, it really shouldn't be an issue for you," Knott said. "It's in this downtown area where we have such a concentration of people that it was really a significant issue."

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