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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Pest bird control with the avicide BCF 7000--Sun Oil refinery project, Tulsa, Oklahoma

  • Author(s): Areson, Charles W.
  • et al.

The Sun Refinery at Tulsa, OK, presented a new and special type of problem that I had never faced before. The refinery is just across the Arkansas River from downtown Tulsa. Many species of protected birds roost and nest within the confines of the refinery proper and in the surrounding riverbank areas to the north, urban and manufacturing area to the east and southeast, rail yards to the south, and hills to the south and southwest. According to Sidney Cabbiness, Environmental Engineer for Sun, the following birds and other animals are known to make this area their home or feeding sites at least some time during the year: meadowlarks, scissortails, mallards, yellowthroat, killdeer, red-tailed hawks, sparrow hawks, red-winged blackbirds, mourning doves, mockingbirds, robins, grackles, magpies, crows, squirrels, red foxes, rabbits, raccoons, bobwhites, great blue herons, domestic cats, bald eagles, golden eagles, great white egrets, kingfishers, Canadian geese, blue geese, roadrunners, skunks, horses just outside the south fence, dairy cattle just to the west, and, of course, our pigeons, starlings and house sparrows. Hawks are prevalent year-round, and the eagles primarily winter at Keystone Lake, just west of Tulsa, and are known to feed up and down the river as well as occasionally on the tank farm. The problem species is starlings, more than 750,000, by my best estimate, along with about 3,000 to 4,000 pigeons. A few sparrows roost around the Club Room and on a loading dock, but they aren't the real problem. Regularly available registered products and techniques would have been either ineffective in solving the existing problem or too dangerous to use in such an environmentally sensitive area. Damage to the units from the droppings was extensive, but the potential health and safety hazards that the birds and their droppings presented to the employees were the primary factors in prompting Sun to seek outside professional help. The development of the avicide BCF 7000 and its use at this Tulsa site has provided a safe and effective solution for the problem. Starling reinfestation the following season (1985-86 winter) has been ZERO. No adverse comments or reactions were received by this office, or by anyone to my knowledge. Much work is still needed to acquire a federal registration, but we are well on our way to providing the pest control community with another much-needed tool.

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