Feral pigeons are descendants of rock doves and infestations of these pest birds can pose a serious problem for businesses. Their droppings can cause damage to vehicles, clothing and property – as well as constantly requiring cleaning up. However, aside from the issue of damage and cleanliness, pigeons can carry a variety of diseases, causing serious health issues for your staff and customers.
Diseases which can be caught from pigeons include viruses such as avian influenza and West Nile Virus. Bacterial diseases such as psittacosis and salmonellosis and fungal infections such as cryptococcal meningitis and histoplasmosis. These diseases can be spread by inhaling air contaminated by dried droppings, or by coming into direct or indirect contact with the birds or their feathers.
Disease carrying pigeons are more common in large urban environments, as the stress levels and poor diet experienced by birds in these locations make them more susceptible to infection.
The Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 protects all wild birds in the UK, so when dealing with an infestation; professional advice should be sought. The options of population management or preventative proofing are ideal tools in dealing with feral pigeons. DIY methods are best avoided as these can be detrimental to the situation. For example -poorly installed netting may still allow pigeons into an area, whilst excluding predator birds; meaning the location is even more appealing.
Netting is an economical and safe method of bird control which discourages pigeons from settling on your property. Often installed under bridges and over plant areas; netting encapsulates the desired area, preventing birds from entering these sheltered, ideal roosting locations.
The netting is available in a wide range of mesh sizes, making it suitable for all types of pest birds. The installation of 50mm mesh is the most appropriate for pigeons, but there are also mesh sizes for sparrows, starlings, crows and gulls.
Spring Wire System
Another method of bird proofing is a spring wire system. This works by installing rows of thin steel wire on locations which are being affected by light to medium pressure infestations. Installed correctly, they will prevent all but the most determined birds from landing on the ledge. The principle of the system is the horizontal wires create an unstable surface for the pigeon to land and roost upon, which in turn deters the pigeons from hanging around.
Offering a more robust solution to medium to heavy pressure infestation, anti-perch spikes are another option for pest birds. Rather than being designed to cause harm to birds as they may appear, spikes are instead intended to turn an inviting perch into an uncomfortable one.
Ask the experts
If your business is being affected by pest birds; such as starlings, pigeons or gulls and you want professional advice from the word go, you can call our expert team at Safeguard Pest Control.