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The Nature of Things

A blog about nature and the environment

Birds in Aisle 7


I saw a starling in Target yesterday. The bird was flying around the rear of the store in Mount Kisco, from the book section, over to electronics and back. That made me think of the birds, mainly house sparrows, I’ve seen in other big-box stores, such as The Home Depot, Lowes or BJ’s.

Apparently, those warehouse-sized stores are such known bird havens that the retailers routinely hire pest-control companies to evict the feathered visitors. One newspaper story I found compared the large stores of today to the barns of yesterday, saying the big-boxes provide a warm, predator-free, food-strewn environment.

Loading docks, attached garden centers and automatic doors become avian portals. According to a 2006 story, the in-store birds survive on foliage, spilled grass seed and birdseed and water inside the stores

Many of the sparrows I’ve seen appeared comfortable being inside the various stores, sitting on high shelves or casually flying around the aisles. The starling yesterday, however, seemed to be flustered, furiously flapping around the store and banging into the walls.

This entry was posted on Friday, September 21st, 2007 at 10:30 am by Mike Risinit. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.
Category: big-box store, house sparrow