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P.S. 225 Officials Send Monk Parakeets Packing

The nest of monk parakeets roosting on top of an air conditioner in front of P.S. 225 has been expelled. According to a Department of Education spokesperson, the ingenious nest made of twigs “disintegrated” when officials unsuccessfully tried to move it this week. The DOE had reportedly hoped to preserve the nest, located over the entrance of the school, 1075 Oceanview Avenue, in some fashion and exhibit it at another location. Colonies of the attractive Central and South American birds have run afoul of governmental agencies and utilities in recent years as their numbers have continued to grow. Two years ago Con Edison announced plans to evict the attractive green and yellow birds, which had set up shop atop electrical transformers around Community Board 15. At the time, Con Edison officials said the benign birds had to go because they carried respiratory diseases, which could potentially endanger its employees. P.S. 225 officials complained this week that the colony posed similar threats to teachers and the student body. “We don’t mind if they’re going to live in the trees, but not if they’re going to live under the air conditioner of our classroom,” said Parent Coordinator Luiza Mezhibovsky. “This is over our main entrance. Can you imagine a parent coming in and droppings are going to fall on their heads?” No children were reported being hit by parakeet droppings, according to Mezhibosky. But school officials feared that it was only a matter of time as the bird colony continued to grow. “The nest wasn’t as big as it is now,” said Mezhibosky. But now they have a full birdhouse.” Before attempting to remove the nest, officials tried applying a “non-toxic” spray to it while the birds were off flying in an effort to deter their return. Monk parakeets are notoriously territorial and possess long memories, however, it remains to be seen just how far the birds will stray. It is likely that they will attempt to rebuild their nest. Colonies could be spied in trees and poles all over the borough. A large colony of Monk parakeets has thrived inside Greenwood Cemetery for years. Although native to warm, tropical climates, the birds are well adaptive to colder temperatures. Bird experts say that the birds tend to seek out flat, stable platforms, which could be easily defended from predators. While there are many versions of how the birds originally made their way to Brooklyn, the consensus among experts and historians is that they escaped a shipment bound for local pet stores a few decades ago. Monk parakeet colonies stretch as far south as Argentina.

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