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!

Comments (11)
  1. karen lyons kalmenson says:

    we are turkeys
    shame on you
    you want to eat us
    this is what
    we will do
    thanksgivi¬ng coming
    gobble gobble
    my ass
    everywhere you hobble
    we wild turkeys will pass
    so enjoy your sides
    your stuffing and such
    and stop eating
    thank you
    very much,
    tom and tina
    and the richmond
    county gang;-D

  2. Patty A. says:

    What a pathetic piece.

    Not enough that we raise and slaughter millions of turkeys a year?

    Now we target the ones living free?

    Get a grip, folks.

  3. Sydelle Houston says:

    Bring them to Queens, we know what to do with them…. 😉

  4. ontario says:

    I’m from the north country and up here we try to enjoy mother nature. you’re problems in nyc are far worse than the turkey population. Heaven forbid you step in turkey poop while you jog past that homeless person or crack dealer . get a grip people!

  5. Schmellma Arss says:

    Are these turkeys jihadists? Radical moozlums perhaps?

  6. N3GG3R LIPS says:

    LMAO @ Santa!!

  7. diver says:

    Nothing a 12 gauge shotgun can’t resolve.

  8. Diesel says:

    Wild turkeys still around? I feel like I’m fresh off the Mayflower. What do they eat here? Let’s use them for Thanksgiving instead of the factory-farm-bred birds raised on God knows what and kept in cages.

    1. Tommy says:

      They are growing large on left over italian food out of the SI residents’ trash cans.

      1. Kathleen says:

        I just watched CBS
        I love turkey especially on thanksgiving, I am so glad that I live on staten island the bigger the turkey the better the thanksgiving. Please, whoever is reading this , I would appreciate you sending me a recipe. Gobble, gobble. Do I pluck the feathers first before I ring the neck?

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