Solution near for guano stink from La Jolla shoreline, mayor says

SAN DIEGO -- A solution is near for eliminating the stink emanating from bird guano on the shore rocks in La Jolla, San Diego Mayor Bob Filner announced Friday night.

The offensive smell has bothered tourists, nearby condo dwellers, merchants and restaurant patrons. The droppings began to pile up when rules were imposed banning people from bothering the birds that sit on the rocks.

A firm that specializes in cleaning off offensive odors, Northern California-based Blue Eagle, has been hired to survey the site this weekend and then begin applying its "bio-active" products on Tuesday, a process expected to take three weeks.

"This has just been a stinky mess for too long," Filner said. "I was about to go get a bucket and mop or a big vacuum cleaner and do it myself."

The various agencies with jurisdiction over the shoreline, and the birds and marine mammals who spend time there have signed off on the plan as environmentally acceptable, the mayor said. To expedite a solution, Filner issued an emergency finding that the accumulation of bird waste presents a public health hazard.

The La Jolla Village Merchants Assn. gathered more than 1,000 signatures demanding relief from the stink. Councilwoman Sherri Lightner, who represents La Jolla, sent an assertive letter to Gov. Jerry Brown demanding assistance.

"This is a good day for our community," Lightner said of Filner's announcement.

Blue Eagle has mitigated similar odor problems in Sacramento and the Colorado Springs Zoo.

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tony.perry@latimes.com

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