Fact vs. Fiction: Pigeons

|  August 30, 2014

Fiction: Feeding pigeons makes the world a better place and doesn’t hurt anybody.

pigeons

Litter, garbage and purposely scattered food must be avoided for effective pigeon control. Photo courtesy of, and copyrighted by, Gene White, pmimages@earthlink.net

Fact: Feeding pigeons, deliberately or unintentionally, is the foundation of most pigeon problems. Once the birds have identified reliable areas as food sources, their numbers multiply — and so do their droppings. Litter, garbage and purposely scattered food must be eliminated and discouraged to avoid parasitic, bacterial and fungal problems among the birds and humans, as well as structural damage to buildings from exposure to droppings and nesting debris.

 

Fiction: Bird spikes are cruel and dangerous.

Fact: Bird management professionals across the globe safely use spikes to effectively deter birds from landing or roosting on buildings and architectural features. Choose a spike style with blunted ends and install appropriately. The spikes won’t pose a danger to birds or nontarget species.

 

Fiction: Mass extermination is the only way to stop a pigeon problem.

Fact: If you destroy a large portion of the pigeon population, you create a void that pressures the birds to reproduce even faster. A balanced approach to manage critical areas with exclusion, trapping, stealth nets, coils, wires, electric track and other deterrent measures will be far more successful.

You can reach the McGoverns at jeffreymcgovern@mindspring.com.

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