City council is postponing the implementation of a tough bylaw that takes aim at those in the city that keep pigeons as pets.
A bylaw that was created earlier this year to prohibit keeping pigeons as pets was set to come into effect this month. But council voted Monday night to postpone its implementation for three months to gather more information on the subject of pigeons - specifically those kept for racing.
Coun. Maurice Dupelle, one of the chief proponents of the bylaw, agreed with postponing it, but warned a tough bylaw needs to be supported by council.
There are seven people in Cornwall who keep racing pigeons as pets and are repsesented by a national association that wants council to reconsider its tough stance on the subject. The owners of racing pigeons have been diligent in keeping their pets, and their properties, clean.
"I know for a fact they're not the issue," said Dupelle. "But we still need a bylaw that has some teeth."
City council has been inundated with complaints from some residents who have neighbours that keep feral pigeons as pets and they are worried about health issues assoicated with pigeon droppings.
Pigeon droppings have been associated with cases of histoplasmosis - an illness which causes flu-like symptoms and can become a serious health issue.
Coun. Syd Gardiner, who lost a lung to histoplasmosis, wants to ensure the issue is dealt with.
"There's a problem...it's a problem with the wild pigeons and that's what we have to deal with," he said.
Coun. Elaine MacDonald was pleased that the bylaw's implementation is being postponed.
"Given time, we can get this right," she said, adding those who keep racing pigeons add to the diversity of the community.