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MENDON, Cache County — People in a Cache County town say they're battling an invasion of the feathered variety.
Mendon homeowner David Kotter says it started with a few turkeys in his yard a couple of years ago. The next year, about a dozen birds showed up. But this year, Kotter is dealing with hundreds of them.
There are even more on the streets, making for major problems in this small town of 1,300.
"They're beautiful birds," said Kotter. "There's just so many of them."
It's just a big bird that makes a big mess and some people don't like that.
–Darren Debloois, Division of Wildlife Resources biologist
Kotter says they show up every morning and every night. They come looking for food and shelter — even tearing through bales of hay meant for the horses.
Other Mendon homeowners are dealing with the same issue. The birds are overrunning the town.
"They're kind of fun to watch but they do make a mess everywhere," said Laura Morgan.
If only tracks were the one thing they'd leave behind.
"That's the biggest problem," said Darren Debloois, a biologist with the Division of Wildlife Resources. "It's just a big bird that makes a big mess and some people don't like that."
Debloois says a wet spring last year allowed more turkeys to hatch.
"In addition to that, we've had the cold and snow in the Cache Valley," he said. "Those birds are trying to seek shelter and food in some of the more urban areas."
The Division of Wildlife Resources has set up traps and is releasing the birds in less-populated areas.
"It's an unusual year for turkeys this year, for sure," said Debloois.
He says there's no real problem with the large number, just that they may get in the way of humans.
"People have a hard time," said Morgan. "Some of my students have hit turkeys as they come through. They don't always move."
Between Cache and Morgan counties, the DWR has trapped about a hundred turkeys so far this season. Most of them are being released in Summit County.