Posted: 6:17 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 12, 2012

Buzzard-feeding man ruffles neighbors' feathers

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PALM BAY, Fla. —

Residents of a Palm Bay community said they are upset at their neighbor for feeding buzzards outside of his home.

Neighbors along Cala-Bria Avenue said the man feeds them raw meat, and now, they've taken over his home.

Robert Lyttle's home has become a sanctuary for vultures. They roost on his roof, all over his yard, and just about anywhere they can find a spot.



It's illegal to capture or kill some vulture. Turkey vultures do have some protection, but the neighbors said all these huge birds have become a nuisance.

"My patio is covered with poop. They get in my pool, they poop in pool they tear up my plants in the backyard," one neighbor said.

Neighbors called WFTV after running into roadblocks with the city, the county and wildlife agencies.

Several told WFTV that Lyttle has been regularly leaving meat out for the birds, and on more than one occasion that meat has been dropped on neighboring homes blocks away.

"I had a piece of meat come down one day. I don't worry about that," another neighbor said.

"God put them here before they put us here. They belong to him," Lyttle said.

Lyttle said he's checked and made sure feeding the birds was legal. He said he doesn't bother any of his neighbors and the birds are all he has left.

"They are my family," Lyttle said.

"You wake up in the morning and hear them, doom doom doom," a third neighbor said.

But his feathered friends are leaving many others flustered, and they just want them to migrate somewhere else.

Neighbors said they have tried to scare them away with loud noises, but they are stuck because capturing them or harming them could lead to a $15,000 fine.

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