Grackles invade Odessa city limits

Grackles invade Odessa city limits

WEST TEXAS (KWES) - Have you noticed an invasion of Grackles? They are the black birds that flock in the thousands like an army ready for an attack or like scenes of scary movies.

Some Texans think they are annoying and obnoxious, but the birds are native to Texas, according to the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department. Apparently, there is no one to blame for the flocks but modern day conveniences.

"Grackles are members of the blackbird family and, as I mentioned, we have two species of them they are very opportunistic. So, they will be attracted to trash and things left over in parking lots. They are attracted to tress and water features and so if we provide trees for them they will nest there," said Michael Nickell, Sensible Nature Center's scientist and naturalist.

In the past, city officials had a Grackle eradication program that involved giving the birds poisoned pellets. But, Nickell's says that's not always the best idea.

"There is always unattended consequences. So, you have the dead grackles and anything that comes to feed on those dead grackles could get poisoned themselves," said Nickell.

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