Central Texas Marketplace Taking On Grackle Problem - kcentv.com - KCEN HD - Waco, Temple, and Killeen

Central Texas Marketplace Taking On Grackle Problem

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(KCEN)-- The Central Texas Marketplace has had enough.

Every evening around sunset, the shopping center is taken over by thousands of grackles. The birds perch on buildings, trees, and power lines throughout the plaza. Often leaving their "presents" on customer's cars.

In hopes of ending this problem, the Central Texas Marketplace has hired Dan Beltrand, of Service Maintenance Inc. to get rid of the birds. Starting Monday, Beltrand will be shooting off loud propane noise makers and shinning bright lights to disperse the birds.

The commotion will start each night just before sunset and last for about 1 1/2 hours for a total of 10 days. Hopefully removing the grackles for good.

"These are wild animal they're going to do what they want to do," said Beltrand. "But the track record shows that they'll stay away for a long period of time." 

For frequent shopper Cindy Engel, she's hopeful this will end the tradition of running to her car to avoid the birds.

"They've definitely gotten the car a few times," said Engel. "It just makes it a kind of nuisance to shop with the birds around."

And for Erika Ashley, an employee of Sharkey's Cuts For Kids, she's okay with listening to the cannons firing off, if it get's rid of the dreaded grackles.

"They just sound like a heard," said Ashley. "You can see them, they're like a black cloud."

If the 10 days of noise are successful, the birds will be gone from the Central Texas Marketplace. But according to Beltrand that just means they'll take over a new area of Waco.

"It can get to be a big vicious cycle where they just get pushed from one place to another around town."

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