VIRGINIA

Vultures scared off from Leesburg neighborhoods

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A Loudoun County neighborhood is sleeping a little easier tonight after crews worked to scare off a group of vultures that were nesting in the area.

The firecracker-like pellets USDA Wildlife agents shoot don’t physically harm the birds, but they sure do scare them.

For some reason, vultures seem to love Leesburg and the town has been dealing with the issue for years.

“I did not like just looking at them,” says Allyson Camp. “They were just nasty looking.”

For about two years, Camp has had up to 200 of them spending the night in her and her neighbor’s trees. Her husband would try to scare them.

“They would fly off, but then they came right back.”

The birds are quite the nuisance. They damage trees, roofs and other things, but perhaps nothing is worse to deal with than their poop.

“It whitewashes all the lawn, all the shrubbery and plants.”

One neighbor says she can’t use her backyard at all.

“Couple vultures no one really has a problem with, but 200 is a problem in somebody’s backyard.”

During the day the vultures can be seen soaring high above, but it’s at night when they sleep that they’re choosing peoples’ backyards.

The USDA and Leesburg Police have been trying to get them to move this week using two main methods. Pellets and a dead frozen vulture, which is hung as a Wild West-style warning.

“They don’t like to see their own kind dead.”

A local conservation group was critical of the plan to get rid of the birds, but people who live near them say authorities can’t get them out of here fast enough.

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