It is important to keep pigeons away from residential homes and larger facilities because their droppings are not only unsightly and messy, but they can pose a health hazard. They can also cause damage to structures because they are corrosive. When they come into an area, the population can grow quickly and become a problem.
There are some cost-effective options to keep pigeons away. Various types of pigeon repellents will do this, but some are more effective than others. Overall, repellents can successfully move pigeons from one location to another, but they do nothing to diminish pigeon populations. Here are some common pigeon repellents and where they will work best.
Spikes come in different materials, such as plastic or steel, and often consist of strips that you install on areas where pigeons are likely to perch. Spikes are an inexpensive solution, easy to install, and require little maintenance. They work best in residential homes where you can target all railings and perching areas. They will not harm the pigeons but just deter them from perching. However, they aren’t really effective in larger locations such as hotels or college campuses, where it is impossible to use the spikes on every railing or perching area. Cover one area in spikes and the pigeons will just move to another area.
The most effective pigeon repellent does nothing to reduce the pigeon population. The Ovo Control pigeon control program is a humane and effective solution that uses pigeon “birth control” to reduce the pigeon population over time.
On the market, you will find many ultrasonic devices that emit high-frequency sounds. The theory is that humans can’t hear them, but pigeons can. Science shows that most birds can’t hear ultrasonic sounds any better than humans. In fact, some people can hear the humming of the device, and it can cause headaches.
There are devices that emit sounds that resemble the calls of predators that could work in areas where they don’t cause a sound disturbance. They cover a fairly large radius and work on battery and solar power.
Gels and pastes
Gels and pastes are sticky and usually contain ingredients pigeons find offensive. Apply them with a caulking gun to perching areas, and they deter pigeons from landing because their feet get stuck. Once the birds learn where the gel is, they tend to stay away.
This offers a temporary solution, but the gel and paste need constant re-application. They quickly become covered in debris and dirt, which renders them ineffective. Bird gel works best on ledges where birds land and defecate on something below you want to protect. You need to be aware that smaller birds may get stuck in the gel and not manage to escape.
Effigies of birds of prey, such as owls, can deter pigeons, but they usually only work for a limited period. As soon as the pigeons get used to them and realize that they don’t move, they will simply ignore them.
Effigies that move their heads may be effective for a little longer. Moving an effigy around from one place to another can also help it to work for longer. Effigies are effective for a short period and in a limited area.
Reflective discs interfere with the vision of the pigeons and keep them away from an area like a balcony where they may want to perch and nest. A prism effect occurs as the discs reflect the light. Any shiny, reflective objects will work – old CDs, small mirrors, tin foil, aluminum cans, or even metallic wrapping paper. When they move in the wind, they provide even more of a distraction.
If there is no sunshine or wind, they are obviously not as effective. It’s best to try and place them in areas with lots of sunlight. You can use them for small areas, and they can help you to keep pigeon droppings away from specific areas, such as your pool.
Fogs and vapors
Fogs and vapors are useful in larger facilities like warehouses or food processing plants. Common fog products contain methyl anthranilate, which has a grape scent and flavor. Pigeons are sensitive to this and try to avoid it.
A fogger suspends small particles in the air, and a timer is set to release them at regular intervals. The particles need to be suspended in the air for them to work, so it can be challenging to make sure this happens on a consistent basis.
Repellents can be effective, but in most cases, they work for a limited period of time and in small to medium-sized areas. Their use will keep pigeons away from the area, but they will simply move on to another location. To reduce pigeon populations, pigeon contraception is the most effective solution.