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Official: Clubbed Seattle gulls had been nuisance

Tue., July 21, 2009, 5:16 p.m.

WSP troopers being investigated for killing birds

SEATTLE — A wildlife official says two Washington state troopers who used their batons to kill seagulls at a Seattle ferry dock were trying to solve a problem with aggressive birds.

Bruce Bjork, chief of enforcement for the state Department of Fish and Wildlife, says the birds killed were juveniles in a nest atop a toll booth. The nest attracted adult gulls that had been divebombing ferry workers and others.

The department is investigating to determine if the troopers committed a crime; under state law, killing or harming seagulls is a misdemeanor that carries up to 90 days in jail and a $1,000 fine. The incident occurred at the Colman Ferry Dock shortly after midnight Thursday.

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