Egrets That Invaded Arlington Neighborhood Have Flown the Coop

Migratory birds roosted in North Arlington trees, fouled the air with sound, ground with droppings

An Arlington neighborhood besieged by birds for many months can now breathe a big sigh of relief – through their noses, no less.

What may have been thousands of egrets, a migratory bird with a federally protected status, roosted in the many trees above the intersection of Wilshire Boulevard and Gaye Lane from late winter until late September.

“I’d seen egrets on cattle and everything, but this was ridiculous. Ridiculous!” said Norma Crader, the neighborhood’s newest resident.

Crader bought her house late last year and moved in before the birds did.

She took notice once a few arrived and couldn’t miss them once they numbered in the hundreds.

“This place had been empty for a couple of years and so they thought that was a nice place to move into. Lucky us,” Crader said with a chuckle.

The egrets have returned to this area of North Arlington each year for at least the past few years, according to neighbors. But the 2017 edition was far worse than in years past – a strong odor of droppings was noticeable from more than a block away and the constant sound of chirping birds was impossible to avoid.

Once the egrets fled their nests, Crader hired a tree trimming company to come out, knock down the nests and thin out the many trees the populate her property.

The City of Arlington had said previously that before the birds begin to arrive in 2018, they will send Animal Control officers to the area to install netting in many of the trees and other deterrents in the hope that the egrets choose another area to build their rookery.

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