A plague of pigeons scaring away food stall customers


JOHOR BARU: Sara Md Nordin used to stop by her favourite stall near her house in Skudai for some snacks after picking her kids up from tuition.

However, that changed after the mother of two started noticing bird droppings on the ground at the makeshift stall.

ALSO READ: Penang’s booming pigeon population a menace to health

“I used to buy fritters from the stall as I wanted to support small businesses that have suffered during the Covid-19 pandemic, but I stopped going there last October because of its unhygienic surroundings.

“I avoided it because I was worried about the food getting contaminated by the dried bird droppings on the ground,” said the 38-year-old housewife when interviewed.

Online seller Christina Lim, 35, said she also felt uncomfortable whenever she saw flocks of pigeons in areas such as Jalan Pasar in the Johor Baru city centre.

According to the Johor Baru City Council (MBJB), 19,143 crows were shot in the city area while 784 pigeons were caught using nets last year.

It said police permits must be obtained before it can carry out crow-shooting as it involves public safety.

Johor Baru Small Business Association chairman Tey Tian Hwang said areas such as Taman Pelangi and Taman Sri Tebrau used to be affected by the presence of crows a few years ago.

“Those are highly populated areas and crows love feeding on rubbish and food waste, which became a problem for residents and businesses.

“Luckily, MBJB took action by regularly shooting the crows and it helped to solve the issue.

“The association has not been getting any complaints lately,” he said.

Tey said the association frequently reminds its members – especially those in the food and beverage industry – to prioritise hygiene by keeping their premises clean and disposing of food waste properly to avoid pest infestation.“Since Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Onn Hafiz Ghazi introduced the state’s campaign, ‘Johor Bersih’, there have been improvements in our members’ attitude towards cleanliness,” he said.

When contacted, MBJB Stulang zone councillor Bong Seng Heng said although he has not received any public complaints about the birds, he would bring the matter up with the council in their next meeting.

He said the public can lodge a complaint to MBJB via the public complaints management system at https://mbjb.spab.gov.my/

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Pigeons , Bird Droppings , Hygiene , Crows , Pests , MBJB

   

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