A Surrey homeowner who cut down a tree that was housing dozens of peacocks could find himself paying a steep price for the act.
For more than a decade, feral peacocks have lived in Surrey’s Sullivan neighbourhood at 150th Street and 62nd Avenue.
LISTEN: Polarizing peacocks in Surrey neighbourhood
Earlier this week he took matters into his own hands, having the tree cut down — admittedly, without a permit.
He was initially assessed a $1,000 fine, but now Surrey’s manager of bylaws says he could be on the hook for 10 times that amount.
“Our investigation is ongoing,” said Jas Rehal.
“We’re looking into further fines of upwards towards $10,000 for both the property owner and the individuals who cut down the tree.”
WATCH: How did peacocks become a staple of this Surrey community?
Rehal acknowledged that the homeowner had been asking the city for three years to do something about the peacocks, who he said were ruining his property.
Rehal added the birds pose a particular challenge for the city.
“The peacocks are not something that normally fall within the scope of animal control and they fall outside the scope of conservation,” he said.
“This is definitely one of the more stranger ones.”
Since the tree was removed, neighbours have expressed outrage, describing the decision as “unreal.”
Meanwhile, in what may be an ironic conclusion to the tale, the now nest-less peacocks have taken up residence on the roof of the homeowner who had the tree removed.