Invasive crows plague Kenya’s coast

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Originally introduced by colonialists in the early 20th century to control garbage, Indian house crows have become an unwelcome fixture of coastal Kenya’s wildlife community.

Loud, large and highly disruptive, the winged menace has ballooned to catastrophic numbers on the country’s Indian Ocean coast. With no natural predators, this invasive species has all-but wiped out some smaller, more colorful indigenous bird species by feasting on their eggs.

They hurt household food security by killing residents’ chicken hatchlings and damage the region’s all-important tourism industry by harassing beach goers, stealing food from restaurants and polluting the area with their droppings.

Authorities have tried cash-bounties, traps and even poison to keep the numbers down, but so far success has been limited. Eight decades after arriving in Africa, the problem persists and is now spreading inland.

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