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Local Editorials

Enjoy Crow Fest, but don’t tell the crows

One area community will celebrate crows this weekend. We hope people flock to Lyndon, even if we do have reservations about the festival’s raucous namesake.

The good folks of Lyndon have spread the word, far and wide, about this weekend’s Crow Festival.

And with good reason. Residents of the White­side County village plan to have a fun time with games, music, a car show and other activities scheduled for today and Sunday.

They certainly want to share the fun with visitors from throughout the region.

However, informing the crows might not be a good idea.

Consider the community of Terre Haute, Ind.

To our knowledge, that city of 60,000 residents does not have a Crow Festival.

But it has crows – thousands of them.

Every winter, crows converge on Terre Haute – by one estimate, up to 100,000.

The raucous birds make a huge nuisance of themselves. Their cawing is incessant. Crow droppings create a public health menace. Cleaning up after the crows costs big money.

What to do?

Two years ago, the city formed the Terre Haute Crow Committee to tackle the problem. Volunteers were sought to observe the birds and collect data. More volunteers, called pyrotechnics launchers, did what the name implies: shoot fireworks at the crows to scare them away. (Traditional scarecrows, apparently, weren’t enough.)

In short, Terre Haute is doing everything in its power – short of shooting or poisoning them – to send those wily crows packing.

“We’ve got to figure out a way to transfer them someplace else,” stated Mayor Duke Bennett in a recent State of the City report.

Hmm. Terre Haute is sick and tired of crows, while Lyndon honors the birds with their own festival.

The unintended consequences of a mass migration here could be distressing, indeed.

The Crow Festival promises to be a fun time.

We certainly hope people flock to Lyndon to enjoy it.

But it might be better if the crows don’t know.

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