Wild turkeys, long known for their presence in Staten Island, have been rounded up by USDA Wildlife Services and slaughtered. The contract between USDA Wildlife Services and South Beach Psychiatric Center cost taxpayers $16,000 to kill approximately 120 turkeys, but nothing has been accomplished! Dozens if not hundreds of turkeys still roam the area.
In 2013, nearly 30 turkeys were successfully relocated to Catskill Animal Sanctuary in Saugerties, NY and in 2014 an additional 100 turkeys were successfully relocated to And-Hof Sanctuary for Farm Animals in Hudson, NY, where they are currently residing peacefully. However, just as slaughtering turkeys will not provide a meaningful long-term solution to addressing the complaints and concerns of certain Staten Island residents, neither will the repeated relocation of turkeys upstate. A long term, sustainable way of addressing the issue is needed.
We are urging South Beach Psychiatric Center not to enter into another contract with USDA Wildlife Services, continue dialogue with the community and animal advocacy groups to implement ways to diffuse the situation without killing any more turkeys.
The situation has been allowed to aggravate for the past decade, and while there isn't an overnight solution, preventing people from feeding these birds, and curbing the growth of their population by oiling eggs have not even been given a chance. We hope that some actions are taken before another contract is taken out to slaughter these turkeys. There's no doubt the slaughters could have been avoided, and still can be.
More information is available on our website www.goosewatchnyc.com