Last week, the Loudoun County section of The Washington Post ran an article about a resident of Leesburg who had a vulture roost in his back yard.
Apparently, vultures have very toxic excrement which is the result of a stomach acid necessary to dissolve skin and bone and kill the bacteria from the vulture's carrion dinner. If it lands on your car, you will need a new paint job. It will also kill the tree by burning the bark off the branches.
Leesburg police called in the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Wildlife Service program to deal with the problem, and they have launched a program of "pyrotechnics, lasers and other dispersal devices aimed at moving the vultures from the residential neighborhood."
As it happens, I have a similar problem in my back yard, where every morning and every evening, more than 100 vultures roost in a tree 50 feet from my home.
I spoke to the Town of Warrenton and borrowed a pistol designed to shoot a noisemaker to scare the birds.
It seemed to work well, but within two days, someone complained, and the town asked for the pistol back.
They said they would have the health department call me to confirm that there was not a potential health problem from the birds. The health department never called.
I don't understand why the people in Leesburg get the federal government, and I can't even get someone to come out and take a look, much less solve the problem.
When I come home at night and look at the 100-foot coffee tree towering above my house filled with vultures, I feel like I am visiting the Addams family.