Firecrackers Don’t Deter Krabi Swallow Swarm

This Sunday photo shows swallows perched atop electric cables in Krabi.
This Sunday photo shows swallows perched atop electric cables in Krabi.

KRABI — Residents were lighting firecrackers Sunday in their latest attempt to disperse thousands of swallows that swarmed into a southern town, hanging on electric cables and defecating onto the road below.

Fifty households at an Ao Luek district intersection in Krabi province have reportedly been affected by the mass of birds of unknown origin, which villagers said spent the night perched on electricity cables at the intersection. They said they were concerned about the smell of the excrements and that those with allergies or respiratory problems complained, but authorities have not taken action so far.

The birds, estimated to be 10,000 at times, have lingered in the area for about three months now. Residents of the commercial town said the birds arrive at about 6:30pm and leave at 5am.

Attempts to make noise and chase the swallows away – including lighting firecrackers – have failed so far, with residents urging related authorities to find a way to solve the problem.

Ruab Bangkram, 63, runs a toy shop in the affected area and said the sky darkened when the birds arrived in the afternoon. She added that her 9-year-old grandson is developing respiratory problems and had to seek medical help several times.