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Wild Turkeys Terrorize Some On Staten Island

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Wild turkey - Staten Island, NY - Nov 9, 2011 (credit: Sean Adams / WCBS 880)

Wild turkey – Staten Island, NY – Nov 9, 2011 (credit: Sean Adams / WCBS 880)

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) –Wild turkeys are becoming a fixture on the streets and lawns of Staten Island to the dismay of some residents.

“I’ve seen turkeys in the dozens. They just multiply every year,” Joseph Buttacavole told CBS 2’s John Slattery. “They are a nuisance.¬† They can be a health hazard.”

“Poop all over the sidewalk. You step in it. I mean, enough’s enough,” said one man.

It’s the perennial complaint that seems to pop up around every Thanksgiving.

WCBS 880’s Sean Adams On The Story

Buttacavole is not a fan of the fowl but other residents say the feathered friends add color.

“I don’t consider it a problem,” Fran Russo said. “I consider it a nice, little character of our neighborhood.”

“Live and let live,” one man told WCBS 880’s Sean Adams. “I have no problems with the turkeys.”

Russo says nine birds were originally brought to the grounds of Staten Island University Hospital 12 years ago and now the wild turkey population has grown in number to 100 or more.

WCBS 880 reporter Sean Adams spotted 50 yelping wild turkeys along Seaview Avenue.

Wild turkeys - Staten Island, NY - Nov 9, 2011 (credit: Sean Adams / WCBS 880)

Wild turkeys - Staten Island, NY - Nov 9, 2011 (credit: Sean Adams / WCBS 880)

Some complain that the birds are going after children. But resident John Collins believes that is an exaggeration.

“The only time they go after the kids [is] if the kids go near them. I’m a parent. I have kids. They’ve never gone after my kids because I don’t let them go near them. They’re bigger than my kids,” Collins told Adams.

The turkeys also pose a problem on the roads, sometimes holding up traffic as they cross the street.

Efforts by the state Department of environmental Conservation to control them have so far been unsuccessful.

While city law protects wild turkeys from hunters, residents say around this time of year, they’ll see people grab one, throw it in a vehicle and drive off.

Do you have a problem with wild turkeys in New York City? Gobble gobble in the comments section below!

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