By Esme Murphy

BROOKLYN PARK, Minn. (WCCO) — A Brooklyn Park neighborhood has been taken over by turkeys.

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The neighborhood on West River Road has always had its share of turkeys, but in the past year the population has exploded.

Neighbors said the turkeys are a traffic hazard, that the droppings are a constant problem and added that garden bedding is being uprooted by turkeys hunting for bugs.

They’ve even reached out to the DNR and city officials for help.

“The population has just exploded where I think it’s out of control,” Steve Hollman said.

Gardens and landscapes are getting trashed, Ron Gunderson said.

“They are in here digging at worms and getting it all over,” he said.

The problem is especially bad in the winter, as they roost on a tree that hangs over Hollman’s home, leaving numerous droppings on his roof.

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“Forty turkeys roosting eight to 12 hours a night have a lot of droppings,” Hollman said.

Gunderson said turkeys stroll down the middle of the street causing crashes and even pick at cars.

The DNR blames some residents who feed the birds.

“We got a bulletin three weeks ago asking us not to feed them,” Gunderson said.

DNR officials said either an archery or shotgun hunt are options the city is considering. Another option is hiring someone to net the turkeys.

“You could donate the meat to the local food shelves,” Hollman said.

And the final option is an official turkey harassment campaign, where residents would be urged to chase and yell at turkeys and even turn garden hoses on them.

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The city council will eventually vote on what to do, and that vote should come sometime around Thanksgiving.

Esme Murphy