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Erik Burgess, Published June 19 2012

Fargo to replace torn netting snagging pigeons at 10th Street North underpass

FARGO – Metal netting used to keep pigeons from roosting is broken underneath the 10th Street North underpass here but will be replaced by July, a city official said Monday.

The issue was raised in a letter to The Forum printed Monday by Fargo resident Bruce Brovold, who said he had spotted many dead or dying pigeons stuck in the netting below the 10th Street North underpass.

Jeremy Gorden, transportation division engineer for Fargo, said the netting at the 10th Street North underpass between Fourth and Sixth Avenues north is at least 20 years old, but it will be completely removed and replaced next month.

“It was never designed to be bird netting,” Gorden said. “It’s basically snow fence that they made work as pigeon netting.”

Gorden said the netting at that 10th Street North underpass will more than likely be replaced with a new type of preventive system.

Fargo uses more up-to-date netting at the underpass of 10th Street at Main Avenue, he said. Fargo also has bird netting in the underpass at University Drive and Main Avenue.

Also used at the University Drive underpass is a steel-spike product called Bird-B-Gone, which keeps the birds from landing.

The anti-roosting tools are something the city maintains on a regular basis, Gorden said, but he has received at least one phone call recently from a concerned resident who counted 11 dead birds in the netting of the 10th Street North underpass.

Tom Trowbridge, assistant city engineer for Moorhead, said they do not use netting as an anti-roosting method.

Trowbridge said underpasses are constructed in Moorhead such that potential roosting areas are not directly over sidewalks and don’t interfere with pedestrian traffic, so anti-roosting tools are not as crucial.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Erik Burgess at (701) 241-5518

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