Orleans and Eversource Work To Solve Cormorant Problem in Cedar Pond

Cormorant spreading the wings to dry in the sun

Cormorant spreading the wings to dry in the sun

ORLEANS – Eversource Energy and the Town of Orleans are considering burying electrical wires to solve Cedar Pond’s cormorant problem.

The town has been tasked with cleaning up the algae-slicked pond after a lawsuit against the Environmental Protection Agency.

Cormorants have been roosting on utility wires above the pond and have been defecating in it for 20 years.

An article approved at town meeting in May asked the state legistlature to urge Eversource to fix the problem, since studies have shown that the bacteria in the bird’s guano was causing the pond to run afoul.

Orleans Selectmen John Hodgson said the utility company is working with the town on the issue.

“They believe there’s only one wire that the birds sit on and they’re estimating roughly a million dollars to bury one line,” said Hodgson.

“Obviously the concern is, you bury that one line, and they just move to one of the other ones, he said.

That cost would be spread among all the ratepayers, but the process could take up to two years.

In the meantime, Eversource officials say they will look at other possible alternatives that include hanging monofilament around the utility wires.

Hodgson said that the town is remaining optimistic that a solution will come soon.

“This is a frustration of the town because we’ve been trying to resolve this, which you would think would be something easy to resolve but it just hasn’t happened. So we should receive an update from them in the next few weeks as to what their plans are going to be,” said Hodgson.

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