Rats With Wings


LONDON, June 19 — On one side is Mayor Ken Livingstone, known for his implacable campaigns against things that annoy him, like people who drive instead of taking the subway. On the other side are the pigeons of central London.

Mr. Livingstone, who calls pigeons “rats with wings,” has made it his mission since he took office in 2000 to eradicate them from Trafalgar Square, long the center of pigeon activity in London. He has been somewhat successful, reducing the population to about 1,800, from 4,000 by, among other things, closing down the last official pigeon-food-vending business, employing a pigeon-scaring falcon and making pigeon-feeding illegal in the square.

For the last two years, there has been a notable exception to the no-feeding policy. Under an unusual agreement, a pigeon-advocacy group has been allowed to scatter corn in a corner of the square for 10 minutes at 7:30 every morning, then leave.

But now, because of what the mayor’s office calls rogue feeding by a radical splinter group that has sneakily been providing food some afternoons, the mayor is canceling even that program.

(full article)

6 Comments so far

  1. Jared (unregistered) on June 21st, 2006 @ 9:02 am

    Incidentally, I agree with Ken.

  2. Jared (unregistered) on June 21st, 2006 @ 9:02 am

    Although not about the bendy bus. That thing is a disaster.

  3. Eileen (unregistered) on June 21st, 2006 @ 12:01 pm

    I must admit that pigeons freak me the hell out (they have no fear!) and I’d be quite happy to never encounter one again, despite being an “animal person”. But that article reads like something from The Onion!

  4. Gary from House of Henry (unregistered) on June 22nd, 2006 @ 1:18 pm

    For once I agree with Ken, those pesky pigeons ARE ‘rats with wings’, it surely is only a good thing to limit them …..sadly everything else Ken does is a waste of space and he should GO!!

  5. PFC (unregistered) on June 23rd, 2006 @ 9:18 am

    now if only that guy would take as much effort with the transport system…….

  6. qaqwex (unregistered) on June 23rd, 2006 @ 12:01 pm

    My only comment about the rats with wings is why don’t they ever seem to c**p on the head of the Lapper statue. Every other statue in the square seems to have a pigeon sitting on its head c**ping but not the Lapper one. What is it +ve discrimination for the disabled by pigeons?

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