According to state and federal laws, there is nothing illegal about the killing of dozens of Muscovy ducks in a private Tampa neighborhood, but for one 13-year-old, at the very least, it is disturbing and in poor taste.
“The guys were just out there and there was like four of them just shooting the ducks,” Bri said.
Bri’s mom allowed her daughter to talk to ABC Action News about the killing as long as we did not give their last name. The family hopes to raise awareness about the Muscovy ducks getting killed in the pond in front of their Tampa home and stop it.
“They were all shooting the ducks, laughing and having fun,” Bri said.
That was on September 13. Since then, Bri said the pest control company responsible has come out an additional four times. Each time, they open fire on the calm waters of her pond sending feathers flying and ducks fleeing for cover. Nearly a dozen were dead on the sidewalk when Bri got home from school that day.
“If you are going to shoot the ducks, please do it humanely. It is terrible because they are all in a pile shaking,” Bri said. “It's really hard to sleep at night. I really don't think I'm the same since it started. They have been at the pond ever since I was four. I have been seeing them every day, and it is really sad to see them dying.”
ABC Action News is not naming the neighborhood or pest control company because they are within their legal rights to “control” the population per federal and state guidelines. Information from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission states the ducks are allowed to be killed in a humane manner after they are captured. It is illegal to release the non-native species back into the wild.
Bri said they have found private owners to take the ducks. Now, they are asking for the public’s help to find a trapper to humanely remove them from their neighborhood pond.
“I want something to be done to help the ducks,” Bri said. “They are just killing ducks that aren't hurting them, and I don't understand why they want to do that instead of just moving them to another pond.”
After witnessing the extermination of the ducks, Bri said she is having trouble sleeping and worries the same nightmare will happen again and again when she gets home from school.
“Every time I come home, I feel they are going to be there, and I am always prepared. I close my eyes when we go down the street,” Bri said.
The FWC has a number of resources and information on Muscovy ducks.