Airport brass worry compost will attract dreaded birds
Published Friday, December 2, 2011 5:44PM EST
MONTREAL - A proposed composting site near the airport could make takeoffs and landings less safe, contend airport officials.
The Dorval composting site is to be located one-and-a-half kilometers from the airport and the facility could attract the very birds that Trudeau Airport officials go to great lengths to deter.
"We have a falconry team at the airport and they have about three hawks, five people and a lot of tools to scare the birds away from the airport," said Christine Beaulieu of Aeroports de Montreal.
The airport officials point out that birds can conceivably cause a plane to go down, as one flight hit the drink in the Hudson River due to an errant avian.
One bird expert says that with some preventive measures, birds will not wing near the composting site.
David Bird recommends, "fast roll-up doors, enclosed trucks, allowing none of the compost material to be outside the building in any way shape or form and even putting up deterrents for birds not to be able to perch near the facility," said Bird, Professor of Wildlife Biology.
However the City of Montreal insists that the compost facility poses no risk.
"We've done our homework, we know exactly how the facility will operate and we've done a lot of research to make sure that any risk, no matter how small, can be minimized," said Executive Committee member Alan de Sousa.