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Humane Society criticizes Big Island bird shoot

By Associated Press

LAST UPDATED: 7:56 a.m. HST, Oct 5, 2010

HILO >> The Humane Society of the United States is criticizing the intentional killing of about 80 cattle egrets on the Big Island by federal officials.

Mike Pitzler, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's state director of wildlife services, has said the Sept. 27 shoot was conducted to frighten away about 400 egrets that lived near Hilo International Airport and could threaten airplanes.

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

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

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