PETA has uncovered what La Crosse is doing with pigeons and the group is not happy about it.

Mayor Tim Kabat says he’s responded to a letter from the animal advocacy group’s cruelty investigations department. La Crosse is working with the USDA on a process to bait, net and remove the pigeons,which is what PETA has complained about.

Kabat assured the group the latest effort comes only after a long string of other, non-lethal methods. Working with the USDA is really just the latest step in pigeon control that has included contraceptive feed, bird barriers and no feeding rules, among others.

In December, the city entered into the $23,000 pigeon removal contract, after spending more than $33,000 to clean pigeon poop out of the Main Street parking ramp.

“I think we have employed a pretty comprehensive approach over the last several years,” Kabat said, “and the city did quite a bit of review and analysis before taking the next step to contract with the USDA.

“I think we’ve been pretty deliberate in our approach and our conversations with the contractor, I mean, we’ve received reassurance that they do everything in their power to treat them as humanely as possible.”

Kabat says the city will stick with the new method for now.

“Obviously, we want to see it succeed and do what it’s supposed to do, so we do need to run its course just a little bit and if we need to make adjustments, we will do that,” Kabat said.


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