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Crews Cleaning Up Egret Mess At Fort Worth Park

(credit: AP Graphics)

FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) - The city parks department is cleaning up a foul smelling mess left by some egrets in Sylvania Park. They estimate it will take at least two weeks to clean up the empty nests and waste left by the birds.

Egrets are federally protected while they're nesting. Thus, city workers couldn't remove the birds who made the park their home over the summer.

Part of the park is closed until the cleanup is complete but the community center will remain open.

In the past few years several neighborhoods in the North Texas city have been bombarded with thousands of egrets. An estimated 4,000 adult egrets found a home in the trees lining Chamberlain Road in Carrollton three years ago.

The birds stained the street, sidewalks, and made it hazardous for neighbors to even go outside.

"It was so bad we had an umbrella, gloves, safety glasses, and a carbon filter mask," said Allison Baughn, who trimmed her trees, hung reflective deterrent balloons, and sounded an air horn whenever she saw a bird afterwards.

Egrets are creatures of habit and will return to nest in the same tree year after year.

"Our goal is to disrupt that nesting pattern enough so we don't have a repeat of that high concentration of nesting that created such a nuisance in the neighborhood," said Carrollton's environmental director Scott Hudson.

It remains to be seen if residents in the Fort Worth neighborhood will proactively try to help the city move the birds so they don't return.

(©2013 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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