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February 20
1906 - L.A. County accepts Mr. H.C. Register's bid to build (Old) Newhall Jail for $2,237 [story]


A sharp-eyed employee of Sam’s Club on Carl Boyer Drive, waiting in a car for the warehouse store to open Monday, witnessed men with “long guns” walking around the premises at 5:55 a.m. Alarmed, the employee called the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s station for assistance.

Sheriff’s deputies called Sam’s Club and spoke to the manager. It turns out, the men had been hired by the store to shoot birds trapped inside the building. The long guns were actually just pellet guns, officials said.

Even though the perceived threat was proved false, a sheriff’s deputy said it was still a good move on the part of the employee to call for help.

Birds such as house sparrows frequently take up residence inside warehouses and large stores with doors that open and close all day, providing easy access. Some birds figure out how to trip the motion sensors and open the doors themselves.

Many store managers hire pest and wildlife control companies to come in after hours and get rid of the birds either by shooting them with pellet guns or by setting glue traps, which is considered less humane.

Birds trapped inside a house can be captured with nets or in live traps and released into the wild, but that doesn’t provide a long-term solution for big-box stores where the birds return easily and often.

There’s no easy answer. According to the Humane Society, “Only by working with store managers on more comprehensive strategies can the issue of problem birds in stores be successfully addressed and resolved.”

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