Police photo: Birds make nest out of used needles in VancouverPosted: Updated:
It's a sad photo that clearly illustrates how bad the opioid crisis has gotten.
The picture shows how pigeons apparently used opioid needles to build a nest.
The photo was posted on Twitter Wednesday by Vancouver Police superintendent Michelle Davey, a veteran of policing in the city’s Downtown Eastside.
The structure - which presumably could have been built by anybody with access to pigeon eggs and used needles - was spotted by the police department’s homeless outreach coordinator during a search of a vacant room in a low-cost hotel frequented by addicts in the Downtown Eastside.
Three eggs were actually in the nest of needles.
Vancouver's "Downtown Eastside" is an area notorious for blatant drug use, crime and homelessness.
Vancouver Police spokesperson Randy Fincham said it’s not uncommon to see pigeons flying around that part of the city with needles to use as “nesting materials.”
The point of sharing the photo, he said, was to “share the prevalence of drug use down there, some of the challenges people who live in the area face, and the problems police face.”
Some have questioned the authenticity of the photo, but Fincham says the photo is not staged, and that the force stands by it.
“There are lots of possibilities leading to the creation of the nest before the police arrived,” Fincham said. “The pigeons were in the room when the police arrived, and flew out of the window when officers arrived in the vacant room.”
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