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How to Get Rid of Pigeons

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Getting rid of Pigeons can be a hassle. They congregate in large flocks, damaging all areas of your home. You will notice pigeon infestations when you see them congregating around your roof, chimney, antennas, wall tops, fences, and pools. It’s best to avoid giving them a constant source of food or water because they will make that area their home and bring the whole flock with them. Pigeons are considered a nuisance bird because of their large population and their nesting habits. There are several issues that are associated with having pigeons roosting on your home.

What Happens When Pigeons Call Your Home Their Home

There are three things that you must take into consideration when pigeons begin calling your house their home.

  • Pigeons Are Homing Birds. This means that they may fly away for a period of time during the year, but they will return to your home to have more babies. Additionally, the babies will also be “homed in” on your home, and when they are old enough to reproduce, they will begin to return to your home for nesting. It has been shown that five or more generations of one pigeon family will return to the same nesting area.
  • Pigeons Carry Diseases. Unlike other birds, the droppings from pigeons are very thick and pasty and are highly acidic. Pigeons usually roost in small spaces on ledges, roof eaves, or similar areas because originally these birds nested on the sides of cliffs before being brought to America. Their thick and sticky droppings help keep their nest together and keep it in place on the sides of these cliffs. Pigeons are the only birds that defecate in their nest. These droppings, however, can eat through the tar on your roof shingles, stick to your house paint, ruin your paint on your car, and corrode any ornamental wood or metal you have outside your home. The acid in these droppings is very strong, and because it is so sticky, it stays wherever it falls. Pigeon droppings can also ruin your landscaping and your garden. Pigeon droppings, even when they are occurring outside of your house, will become powdery after a little while and disintegrates into the air. These particles carry many different bacteria and viruses. There have been very serious lung infections associated with pigeon droppings. It will not take long before your home is at risk for disease when the pigeons move in.
  • Pigeons Are Mean To Other Birds. The favorite thing for a pigeon to do is eat. If you have out any type of bird feeder, the pigeons will take it over and chase off all the song birds. After a while, the droppings from the pigeons around the feeder or bird bath will automatically keep the song birds away.

How to Keep Pigeons Away

You will have to act aggressively to keep pigeons away from your home once they have made their first nest there. In fact, it will be an ongoing process for at least a year until the birds finally realize that they cannot “return home.”

There are some pigeon control methods that you can use that will discourage pigeons from returning to your home to nest. Each of these methods has the potential to work, but are not guaranteed. Each has benefits and drawbacks. Some of the tricks you can use include:

Wind Chimes

Pigeons have very sensitive hearing and are startled by loud noises. Using household items to create noise when the wind blows can sometimes be effective. They can hear sounds at lower frequencies than humans. If you hang wind chimes in the area where the pigeons are nesting, they will not return to the nest. The noise from wind chimes actually hurts their ears. The drawback to this method is if you have a lot of pigeons you will need a lot of wind chimes. This can make your home very noisy. Additionally, if the pigeons are nesting high on the roof, such as in a vent, the wind chimes will be ineffective.

Live Traps

If you put a couple of pigeons in a live trap with food, others will come. Pigeons cannot resist easy access to food. These traps can be very effective if done right. Pigeon traps are usually metal cages that vary in size and include one door. There are different types of traps, some are more elaborate than others. Simple traps are inexpensive and won’t hurt your budget. However, you must realize, you cannot take these pigeons out to the country and release them. Pigeons are intelligent birds, they’re able to find their way back even from long distances. This tactic will only work if they have recently settled on your property.

Pigeon Proofing

Another effective strategy to keep pigeons away is to block off areas where they can nest. Pigeons like to build their nests on flat surfaces. Sometimes their nests can be well hidden and difficult to find. Blocking off all potential entry points will limit the chance of pigeons nesting on your property. Large open spaces like barns, warehouses, and buildings fall victim to pigeon nests. Be sure to close off space above rafters, rails, window sills, and ledges. Putting up mesh and wire around your gutters, eaves, and vents around your home. You will also have to place this wire and mesh around railings and near the top of your porch. While wire and mesh work very well for preventing the birds from nesting it can really detract from the appearance of your home.

Fake Owls and Mylar Balloons

Using other predators to scare off pigeons can be effective if done right. Placing a large owl or hawk in different areas around your home will detract pigeons. Be sure to move the statue around in different areas of your house to keep pigeons guessing. The more the statue moves, the more effective it can be at scaring pigeons away. Pigeons will catch on to the fake if it remains stationary for a long period of time. It would be best to get a scarecrow that shows some type of movement, you can find statues that rotate the head when the wind blows. Tying bright silver Mylar balloons around your home can also work. These are very cost effective methods of pigeon control. Drawbacks? Yes, there are drawbacks. You will have a large fake owl that you will have to move each day or balloons tied all around your home.

What You Absolutely Cannot Do

Regardless of what you have heard, or how small the pellet gun is, you cannot actively shoot pigeons as a way to keep them off your property. Urban legend states that you can kill these birds with any type of pellet gun because they are a nuisance bird. This is not true. Wildlife crimes against birds can be difficult to decide what’s legal or not because of hunting, gamekeeping, and agriculture reasons. Every state has specific laws and regulations set in place. Be sure to look up your state laws before you go running out in the backyard guns blazing.

Consider Calling a Professional Pigeon Control Company

Pigeons are like the unwanted relative that never leaves. Once they move in, they take over everything. In the end, if you are facing a pigeon control problem, it may be in your best interest to call a pigeon control company. A professional pest control company can implement a plan that will effectively get rid of pigeons. As a bonus, you will not have to listen to wind chimes all day, dispose of trapped birds, or risk placing wire and mesh all around your home.

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