CROW DISPERSAL PROGRAM OVERVIEW
What is the Crow Dispersal Program?
The Crow Dispersal Program is an annual effort supervised by the Department of General Services (DGS) and conducted by the Capitol Police. It is an initiative targeted to minimize the number of crows that seek to roost within the Capitol Complex grounds during the evening.
Why are you doing this?
The Crow Dispersal Program is initiated each year in attempt to disperse crows from the Capitol Complex for two primary reasons, safety and maintenance. Bird droppings on sidewalks and buildings create an unsafe environment for employees and visitors. Bird droppings over an extended period of time also adversely affect buildings exteriors and sidewalk surfaces. As a result, time and labor must be expended for cleaning.
When will this program start and how long will it last?
The Crow Dispersal Program will commence on Thursday, November 8, 2012. The hours of operation will be between 5 pm. and 7 pm. The program will be repeated each evening throughout the coming weeks until the crow population in the Capitol Complex has been minimized. If needed, this effort will continue daily over the next few months.
What procedure is done to thwart the crows from roosting in the Capitol Complex?
The Capitol Police fire caps or blanks and screamers via pistols and rifles. The noise generated by the blanks is designed to discourage the crows from roosting for the night in the Capitol Complex area.
Is this harmful to the crows?
No, this anti-roosting measure is not harmful to the crows. It is not harmful to people, the environment, or animals. In fact, DGS has consulted with the U.S. Department of Agriculture on developing the program.
How long has this program been underway?
This is the 15th year the program has been implemented. The Crow Dispersal Program has been effective. However, a continual maintenance program must be implemented each Fall.
Where will this be done?
The Capitol Police will station officers around the Capitol Complex in areas that the crows are likely to be attracted to for roosting. For example, police may be stationed near Soldiers Grove, near large trees, or near buildings more frequently populated by crows seeking warmth.
What can I expect to hear?
The program involves the discharge of blanks (similar to the sound of firecrackers popping) as well as whistling devices.
Why can’t the program start later in the evening?
The start time is dictated by how soon it becomes dark. Crows will not fly after dark. Therefore, the earlier night falls, the earlier operations must commence.
Who can I call about this program?
If needed, you can call DGS with additional inquiries. Contact the Bureau of Facilities Management by dialing (717) 787-7606.