Birds in stores a common occurrence--officials say incident a misunderstanding

Birds in stores a common occurrence--officials say incident a misunderstanding

Pampa, TX (KFDA) - Questions are being raised after workers say dead birds were found inside a Pampa grocery store.

Most birds we see indoors are at pet stores, or in homes. But occasionally they make their way into our grocery stores. And one area store is in some hot water after trying to get rid of the problem.

Officials tell us it is more common than people think...birds making their way into superstores.

Social media posts claim an employee of Walmart got a pellet gun and began shooting the birds in the store, leaving them dead or wounded on the store floor.

But Walmart tells us that is not the entire truth. No employees did the shooting. A company called Animal Re-locators of Texas were getting rid of them.

"You don't hear about it a lot, so I'm sure they are pretty good about handling it themselves. I think this one obviously got on social media and turned into a firestorm there and so that's where parks and wildlife will get involved and investigate the situation," says Pampa City Manager Shane Stokes.

Game Warden Mike Wheat tells us they have only stepped in to ensure no protected wildlife was harmed and per public health, ridding of birds in a public store is actually encouraged.

"In Texas, there's only 4 birds that you can legally take that are not state or federally regulated. And those birds are European starlings, English sparrows, Eurasian collard dove, and pigeon or rock dove. It's our job to enforce the law and if those...if there's any impropriety there or there's been any law broken, then we'll deal with that as it comes up," says Wheat.

The public health department tells us birds can pose serious health hazards if around products we consume. If they get a complaint, they further investigate and require the birds be removed by a wildlife removal contractor or company.

Some trap and release them...others exterminate them.

"Anybody that has an issue like this like I said to call their local game warden. We don't do any removal, but we do have numbers of people that do removal, that type of thing that do trapping, do wildlife removal and I would encourage them to make contact with their local game warden instead of trying to take matters into their own hands," says Wheat.