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Arizona approves pigeon coop for Mike Tyson


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Arizona approves pigeon coop for Mike Tyson

21 July 2005

PHOENIX: Boxer Mike Tyson's best bird buddies are getting a new home.

A $US12,000 pigeon coop that will provide Tyson's pets with 9.3 square metres of air-conditioned comfort was given the go-ahead on Tuesday by officials in the posh Phoenix suburb of Paradise Valley, Arizona.

The coop will be built behind a nearly one-acre residence Tyson recently bought there.

Town officials last month halted construction of the coop after a neighbour complained it was being built without permission. An application for a permit was then filed.

Officials said there is nothing on the town's books limiting the number of birds a homeowner can have on the property. Tyson plans to house 85 to 100 birds.

The troubled ex-heavyweight champion's love for pigeons is well documented. Tyson gained a reputation as a fighter while growing up in New York after pummelling a bully who killed one of his pigeons, according several accounts of his career.

Last month, Tyson made an unannounced visit to a Phoenix City Council subcommittee to argue against a proposal that would limit residential properties to 40 birds.

"They're pretty harmless," Tyson was quoted as saying in The Arizona Republic. "I don't understand why people would want to get rid of pigeons. They don't bother no one."

Tyson could not be immediately reached for comment.


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