Mr Gerald Giam Yean Song: My residents in Bedok Reservoir and Hougang have given me feedback on the nuisance caused by pigeons, crows, mynahs and even quails around the housing estates.
The proliferation of the bird population is often a public hygiene and in the case of crows, a safety issue, which worries residents. The Aljunied-Hougang Town Council (AHTC) has been doing its part to combat this problem. The AHTC puts up banners to caution residents against bird feeding and works with residents to identify and report feeders. It advises food stall operators on proper food waste disposal methods and our conservancy workers regularly the remove unattended food sources. The Town Council also conducts regular tree pruning and as a last resort, pigeon culling.
Despite these efforts, the bird nuisance problem has persisted. NParks occasionally sets up crow traps but these are rather ineffective as crows are intelligent creatures and tend not to fall for these traps.
I believe this problem is not unique to AHTC. A national level effort by MND and its agencies may be needed to combat it. These may include more public education to discourage bird feeding, setting up, CCTV monitoring and stepping up enforcement action against bird feeders.
It would be helpful if NParks could regularly share with Town Councils its research and recommendations on best practices for controlling the population of various bird species. It could step up efforts to trap and relocate birds in areas where they are causing a nuisance to the public. Together with the efforts of Town Councils, MND’s stepped up involvement could help residents and our ardent friends to co-exist more peacefully in our urban environment.
8 March 2022
Ministry of National Development