A number of Port Authority workers have been authorized to use shotguns around JFK to shoot down any snowy owls that may cross into the airport's airspace.

The Port Authority issued the owls' death warrant after one got sucked into a jet turbine last week.

According to the Daily News, there are at most five armed "wildlife specialists" currently hunting the birds with shoot-on-sight authorization.

Opponents of the birdicide question why authorities can't ditch the fowl play and simply catch and release the owls, a process that's been effectively used at Boston's Logan Airport. Snowy owls are usually federally protected, but airports can receive waivers.

[image via AP]