Bird poop cleanup begins at La Jolla Cove

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SAN DIEGO – Scientists descended on La Jolla Cove Tuesday to begin testing a microbial solution to neutralize the stench of bird feces along the bluffs.

The testing is part of Mayor Bob Filner’s plan to address the public health concern and economic toll the stench is having on local businesses.

poop bluffs pic“While the powerful stench may seem like a punch line to many, I can tell you it’s nothing to laugh at for the residents and business owners in La Jolla,” said Councilwoman Sherri Lightner.

After nearly a year of red tape with environmental groups, Filner declared the smell and residual affects a public health issue clearing the way for a quick and natural way to get rid of the offending bird feces.

Working under strict environmental and marine mammal protection guidelines, consultants with Blue Eagle Cleaning will test a solution on the bluffs to figure how to best apply it without disturbing the animals.

“It’s a blend of bacteria,” said biologist, Keith Merkel of Merkel and Associates. “[The bacteria will] go after the nutrients and water material and digests that. When they run out of food they will ultimately die off.”

Marine biologist will oversea the whole process to make sure the animals are never threatened.

For the businesses along the cove who complain the smell is driving away their customers, the timing couldn’t be better as we head into peak tourist season.

“It smells like rotten fish,” said tourist Katherine Harwood.  “It’s horrible. You walk by and you don’t want to walk up this hill – it’s pretty bad.”

If the test works, they will begin apply the solution to the whole bluff in June.  It will cost about $100,000.00 a year.


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