Humane Society criticizes Big Island bird shoot

HILO, Hawaii (AP) - The intentional killing of about 80 cattle egrets on the Big Island is being criticized by the Humane Society of the United States.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's state director of wildlife services, Mike Pitzler, has said the Sept. 27 shoot was conducted to frighten away some 400 egrets that lived in the area in order to protect planes at nearby Hilo International Airport.

The state director of the Humane Society, Inga Gibson, told the Hawaii Tribune-Herald on Friday that if the intent was simply to scare away the birds, the shooters could have used blanks.

Gibson says killing a few of birds isn't going to prevent roosting in the area. She says there are numerous other techniques that could have been used to achieve the goal.

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