NAVASOTA, Texas - Most would steer clear of high-voltage areas. But the warning signs don't apply to a group of vultures who call one power substation home.
"Right now, there's probably about 50. But at other times, there may be as many as a hundred," said Ronnie Hale, a customer service representative with Entergy Texas.
Most of the vultures hangout on a microwave tower that looms over the electrical plant. And frequently, they fly into trouble.
"They can get into these circuits anywhere and cause a problem," said Hale.
The vultures often get electrocuted and when they do, they cut the power for portions of the county.
"We have lost power, just in the past month alone, probably about three or four times," said grocery store manager Erica Welch.
An ongoing problem for several years, the birds can't be killed.
"They are protected by law so we can't do anything to harm them," said Hale.
Employees have tried to get the birds to go away. They use a cannon machine to make loud noises that scare the birds off. However, the vultures just return a few minutes later.
They've also tried hanging devices that resemble dead vultures on the tower. Again, no luck.
Now they will employ the use of spike strips and attach them to the tower.
"We hope by doing that they will move some place else on their own and it'll help us solve that problem," said Hale.
Even if that doesn't work, Hale says he won't give up.
"We do have an obligation to our customers to solve that problem one way or another," he said.
(© 2017 KAGS)