NULL Kouga local municipality
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Last modified: 02 Jan 2018
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Municipality meets social partners about egrets

04 December 2017
The municipal team and Environmental Affairs at a recent egret removal operation.

The municipal team and Environmental Affairs at a recent egret removal operation.

Kouga Municipality recently met with affected and interested parties to discuss challenges brought about by the presence of flocks of egrets in residential areas.

The meeting took place at the Newton Hall in Jeffreys Bay in November.

In recent years there have been a number of reports about nuisances caused by the birds, especially during the breeding period which is around October and November every year.

Social Services Portfolio Councillor Daniel Benson said the birds are believed to migrate from surrounding cattle farms to areas with taller trees, in particular blue gum and fig trees.

“These invasive trees provide ideal spots for the egrets to build nests due to their height. The presence of a large flock of these birds is a risk as their faeces may lead to health problems, especially for children, in addition to the general nuisance they cause,” he said.

Benson said the meeting agreed on a number of steps to be taken, including that each property owner had a responsibility to ensure that trees are pruned before the breeding season of the egrets start.

“In the event that birds have to be removed, such action will be coordinated by the municipality, the SPCA and the Department of Environmental Affairs, in the interest of protecting wildlife.

“The municipality will advise the public of any planned large-scale bird or chick removal using, among other platforms, social media,” said Benson.

The currently infested areas at 45 Da Gama Road and 196 Oosterland Street will be attended to in March 2018 once the breeding season is over.