Police are searching for the owners of a flock of homing pigeons that caused the shutdown of an interstate in Florida on Tuesday night.
The incident happened on June 29th in Volusia County on Interstate 95 at around 11 p.m.
According to Click Orlando News, the Florida Highway Patrol began receiving calls from motorists reporting “500 white doves” flying at cars on I-95 near the International Speedway Boulevard exit.
Volusia County Animal Services, the Florida Highway Patrol and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission responded to the scene and shut down the exit ramp for three full hours as they worked to round up the stray birds. Since then, officials have determined that the birds are homing pigeons, and most likely escaped from a crate that busted open after falling out of a truck. Because the pigeons typically roost at night, the sudden fall and the bright lights of oncoming traffic confused the birds, sending them flying into traffic.
More than 70 pigeons have been recovered and are in custody at the Volusia County Animal Services, but an owner is yet to be found, so police are asking for the public’s help in returning the birds to their home. The birds are not marked or banded in any way.
“Our job is to help animals find their way home, whether they’re covered in fur, scales, or in this case feathers,” Volusia County Animal Control Officer Alicia Dease said. “We’re hoping someone out there might have information on where these birds came from or the truck that was carrying them. While homing pigeons aren’t as common as dogs or cats, they are cared about by someone and we want to ensure they’re returned to their rightful owner.”
Anyone with information regarding the pigeons is asked to call Volusia County Animal Services at 386-248-1790 or email [email protected]