B.C. city approves plan to relocate 100 peacocks

B.C. city approves plan to relocate 100 peacocks

The plan also mean fines for anyone who feeds or houses the bird

Surrey City Council has approved a plan to relocate an estimated 100 peacocks that have been ruffling feathers in Sullivan Heights.

The plan involves capturing and relocating all the birds to Surrey Animal Resource Centre.

“A certified contractor will be retained and a project timeline/budget will be finalized,” notes a report signed by Jas Rehal, Public Safety Operations Manager. “Once peafowl are captured, they will be transported to the Surrey Animal Resource Centre and be subject to the standardized intake procedure, including a medical evaluation.”

From there, the city will work with people from around the province who have reached out expressing interest in taking the birds, to have the peacocks relocated.

Under the proposed plan, eggs would be removed from public property, and from private property by owner request.

“Humane traps” would also be provided to owners, upon request, and education on monitoring those traps would be provided.

“Once peafowl are captured, bylaw officers will remove them immediately,” the staff report notes, adding all traps would be safe for residents, children and other animals.

A Certified Biologist would be hired to oversee the action plan, as well.

Due to the complex nature of this plan, “a long-term commitment by the city to resolving this issue may be required,” Rehal said in his report, noting the flighted birds are difficult to trap, given they roost in elevated locations.

The city’s plan also means residents who feed or house the birds will face stiff fines, and there will be “increased enforcement” with “zero tolerance” for those found to be doing so.

Anyone found in violation will face a $250 fine, under the city’s nuisance bylaw.

And, anyone found to be keeping a peafowl would face a fine of $450 per bird, and the peafowl would be seized.

“If any peafowl are left behind, the issue will continue to exist,” Rehal notes in his report to council.

“While the community continues to be divided on the issue of peafowl, staff recognize the negative impacts to safety and property caused by the nuisance peafowl,” Rehal’s report notes. “Staff appreciate some residents want them to remain as an aesthetic value, but a residential area is not an appropriate place for peafowl. Tensions continue to rise in the area, and staff receive a high amount of daily calls, emails and complaints.

“The primary issues raised by residents have been related to noise, excrement, damage to property and aggressive behaviour towards domestic pets and children,” Rehal added.

Staff plan to hold a neighbourhood meeting on Thursday, July 12th at the Surrey Operations Centre (6651 148 St.) to inform the community of the forthcoming plan.

Complaints about the birds go back to 2010 after a previous homeowner left them behind in 2006.

As the residential community grew, so too did the bird population.

Over the years some in the community have developed a fondness for the birds, while others find them to be a nuisance, Rehal’s report notes.

While the city sent a local expert to conduct a site evaluation several years ago, Rehal’s report notes some locals “intervened and objected” to the trapping of the birds.

Then on April 30, the peacocks made headlines when a frustrated homeowner was fined $1,000 after cutting down a tree known to be a home to the peacocks, saying the city’s inaction left him no choice.

They were in the news once more when video footage surfaced of peacocks damaging vehicles.

SEE ALSO: Surrey man says he illegally cut peacock tree out of desperation

READ ALSO: SIMPSON: Peacock problems dragged on far too long in Surrey

In looking to other communities and experts, Surrey staff say the “complex and divisive issue has not been quickly or easily resolved in other municipalities.”

Longboat Key, Florida began a peafowl removal program in January 2016 and Surrey staff say their efforts were “incomplete.”

“The population (while much smaller) is growing again,” Rehal’s report notes. “They have used both contract trappers and staff to manage their efforts.”

Ranchos Palos Verdes, California began a peafowl removal process in August 2015 and currently have “small pockets of remaining peafowl in several neighbourhoods that are removed on a complaint basis by the Los Angeles Zoo,” Surrey staff note, adding, “they have intensively resourced the issue through their Code Enforcement Department with additional staff and by working collaboratively with the Los Angeles Zoo.”

Australia, meantime, is developing a national strategy to address feral peafowl populations which may be adopted this summer, Rehal notes.

“(Australia’s) strategy includes a variety of potential resolutions that can be applied in individual locations – for example: stabilizing the population by removing all reproductive peafowl, culling the entire population or leaving the peafowl as is.”

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
81 new cases of COVID-19 detected in Interior Health Friday

One additional staff member at Kelowna long-term care home tests positive, no new deaths

Downtown Revelstoke. (Liam Harrap/Revelstoke Review)
Revelstoke COVID-19 cases tick slowly up to 49

An increase of only three cases since Nov. 30

Danielle Kraemer tested positive for COVID-19. She is one of so far 46 cases in the community since the beginning of November. She is sharing her story publicly to stop the spread of fear. (Submitted)
I have COVID-19: Revelstokian shares her mental anguish with the deadly virus

Everyone is different and we should talk about it says Danielle Kraemer

(File)
One death and 82 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health

1,981 total cases, 609 are active and those individuals are on isolation

Pickleball game in Vancouver on Sunday, November 8, 2020. B.C.’s public health restrictions for COVID-19 have been extended to adult team sports, indoors and outside. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
711 more COVID-19 cases detected in B.C. Friday

‘Virus is not letting up and neither can we’

It was an opening day filled with blue skies, sun and COVID-19 protocols at Vernon’s SilverStar Mountain Resort Friday, Dec. 4, 2020. (Brendan Shykora - Morning Star)
VIDEO: Passholders enjoy sunny opening day at Silver Star Mountain

Resort staff say parking reservations, COVID-19 protocols went smoothly Friday, Dec. 4

Demonstrators, organized by the Public Fishery Alliance, outside the downtown Vancouver offices of Fisheries and Oceans Canada July 6 demand the marking of all hatchery chinook to allow for a sustainable public fishery while wild stocks recover. (Public Fishery Alliance Facebook photo)
Angry B.C. anglers see petition tabled in House of Commons

Salmon fishers demand better access to the healthy stocks in the public fishery

Farmers raise slogans during a protest on a highway at the Delhi-Haryana state border, India, Thursday, Dec. 3, 2020. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau rejected the diplomatic scolding Canada’s envoy to India received on Friday for his recent comments in support of protesting Indian farmers. Tens of thousands of farmers have descended upon the borders of New Delhi to protest new farming laws that they say will open them to corporate exploitation. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Manish Swarup
Trudeau brushes off India’s criticism for standing with farmers in anti-Modi protests

The High Commission of India in Ottawa had no comment when contacted Friday

Nurse Kath Olmstead prepares a shot as the world’s biggest study of a possible COVID-19 vaccine, developed by the National Institutes of Health and Moderna Inc., gets underway Monday, July 27, 2020, in Binghamton, N.Y. U.S. biotech firm Moderna says its vaccine is showing signs of producing lasting immunity to COVID-19, and that it will have as many as many as 125 million doses available by the end of March. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Hans Pennink
Canada orders more COVID vaccines, refines advice on first doses as cases reach 400K

Canada recorded its 300,000th case of COVID-19 on Nov. 16

Apartments are seen lit up in downtown Vancouver as people are encouraged to stay home during the global COVID-19 pandemic on Thursday, Dec. 3, 2020. British Columbia’s deputy provincial health officer says provincewide data show the most important area B.C. must tackle in its response to the COVID-19 pandemic is health inequity. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Marissa Tiel
Age, income among top factors affecting well-being during pandemic, B.C. survey shows

Among respondents earning $20,000 a year or less, more than 41 per cent reported concern about food insecurity

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Victoria-based driving instructors are concerned for their own and the community’s safety with the continued number of residents from COVID hotspots in the Lower Mainland coming to the city to take their driving road tests. (Black Press Media file photo)
Students from COVID hotspots travel to Vancouver Island for driving tests

Union leader calls on government to institute stronger travel ban

RCMP. (Phil McLachlan - Capital News)
Two arrested after attack at Vernon home

Police spotted around 43rd Avenue linked to Wednesday assault

Most Read