Milton Keynes town shames thoughtless dog owners by spraying blue circles of paint around dog poo left behind
The mystery of blue circles sprayed around dog poo has been solved in an MK town.
Visitors to Bury Field Common in Newport Pagnell were puzzled to see the distinctive marking around every single deposit of dog poo that owners had failed to pick up and bin.
Now the town council has claimed responsibility for the initiative and explained why they are doing it.
Bury Field Common is owned by Milton Keynes Council, but Newport Pagnell town council receives regular complaints about the amount of dog faeces left there.
And lockdown has made the problem significantly worse, said Newport town clerk Shar Roselman.
"People from other areas, including professional dog walkers are coming to the common to exercise their dogs. It seems it's even advertised on social media as the ideal place to let dogs run off the lead," said Shar.
She added: "The Town Ranger has therefore started using a blue circle strategy which has worked elsewhere to highlight remaining dog faeces to bring it to people’s attention. This strategy results in high rate of reduction of evident dog fouling."
Some people have criticised the fact that the poo is not picked up by the ranger Simon Bates after the paint has been sprayed.
Shar said: "It would do no good for the ranger to go along collecting existing dog faeces – all this would do is encourage people to believe it is perfectly acceptable to leave their dog waste behind on the common – someone else will come along and pick it up."
The paint used is biodegradable and disappears after a while, causing no damage to plants or wildlife.
"Dog waste damages the common, including the rare flora and fauna on the site. Dog owners should be aware that they are legally liable for being in control of their dogs at all times, and this includes collection of any dog waste. Very large fines can be issued to those who do not manage their dogs and their dog waste."
Newport town council is currently negotiating with Milton Keynes Council to be allowed to take over the running of Bury Field Common.
If that happens, they would consider introducing enforcement action and fines for owners who do not pick up their dog's mess, said Shar.