Buzzards congregating in east Texas city

A vulture is seen flying over Schleicher County, near Eldorado, Texas, Thursday, April 10, 2008. Maybe if they were pretty, the ubiquitous buzzards that soar over Texas and elsewhere before landing to dine on some carcass wouldn't be viewed with such repugnance or considered a nuisance. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)

January 7, 2011 9:46:15 AM PST
The buzzards are back in the East Texas city of Gladewater. City Manager Sean Pate tells the Longview News Journal that about 30 of the large scavenger birds have been seen roosting on the city's water tower in recent weeks.

Gladewater has dealt with an abundance of buzzards before, most recently in the spring and summer of 2009.

State wildlife expert Steve Epperson helped the city get rid of the problem in the past and has been contacted again.

Officials say buzzard droppings are a threat to the water tower's paint job, which runs about $80,000. The birds also can damage telecommunications equipment on top of the tower.

Gladewater, a city of about 6,500 residents, is 115 miles east of Dallas.