We spoke with six industry suppliers to take the pulse of what is available — and soon to be available — to pest management professionals (PMPs) for bird control and prevention. Read on for their insights and announcements. We also want to know what bird service strategies you’re implementing, and what you’re hoping to add in the near future.
James Rodriguez, ACE, Technical Director
RECENT INNOVATION: At PestWorld 2018, we debuted our 20-foot Pro-Line extension pole (item 1720AL5). The lightweight, five-piece pole collapses to 5 feet, 7 inches for easy transportation. It can knock down bird nests, scrape droppings (with mountable scraper item 1735) or even hold light netting during an installation.
NEW LAUNCHES: We are developing additional mountable devices for Pro-Line. Already, this pole has proved to be so useful that other manufacturers have begun to expand its uses; creating a termite probing tool for it, for example. Keep an eye out for further development of additional accessories — the possibilities are truly endless.
PREDICTIONS: We foresee bird control changing in many ways, especially regarding safety and tools specifically designed for this segment. The end result is increased quality of service provided to the customer. We also see bird inspections and estimates becoming more precise, with the use of technology like drones and mountable mini-cameras for inspecting in soffits and hard-to-reach roof lines.
Bird Barrier America
Cameron Riddell, President and CEO
RECENT INNOVATION: Bird Barrier’s Optical Gel are small plastic dishes that are secured to a sanitized surface with glue, magnets or zip ties. They are secured in a pattern that stops the birds from landing on the surface — 10 inches apart on low-pressure sites, and 6 inches apart where pressure is heavy. Quick installation makes it easy to assess a problem site prior to installation, which helps the proposal and bidding processes. The ease of estimating and installing Optical Gel has helped hundreds of PMPs enter the profitable bird control field. Many have gone on to sell jobs using netting, electrified tracks and spikes. Bird Barrier offers free online webinars to PMPs who want to learn the ABCs of Optical Gel.
PREDICTIONS: We foresee continued growth of the bird control field in the coming years. Bird populations are growing, and property owners — especially in food-related industries — are becoming better educated and more willing to invest in a long-term bird control solution. We also see more PMPs asking for help in training employees in all facets of bird control. All these factors are good news for the industry.
Bruce Donoho, Owner & CEO
RECENT INNOVATION: We’re continually expanding upon our Bird Net offering, with advances in hardware (black oxide coating, net magnets, and more), extension of custom lengths up to 200 feet, and the introduction of flame-retardant netting and our durable pond netting.
NEW LAUNCHES: With 58 patents and counting, we’re excited about several new — and several more retooled and optimized —products in our pipeline that are slated for release this year.
PREDICTIONS: Imagine a world where you walk into every customer meeting having been thoroughly resourced and trained with bird control best-practice product and sales techniques, tips and tricks. Bird-B-Gone already offers access to on-demand, smartphone-based virtual reality and web-based educational resources. But this, in combination with recent advances in machine learning, the internet of things, and rapid prototyping technologies, is creating a future where PMPs can expect to see fully integrated bird control solutions and sales best-practices come to market with greater frequency and effectiveness.
Erick Wolf, CEO
RECENT INNOVATION: The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) registration for Innolytics’ OvoControl P, a contraceptive for pigeons, recently was extended to include starlings, grackles and blackbirds. Similar in action to an insect growth regulator (IGR), it’s ideally suited for large sites such as college campuses, chemical facilities, municipalities, processing plants, ports, etc. Approved for use in the United States, Canada, Mexico, and parts of Latin America and Asia, OvoControl contains the active ingredient nicarbazin. This prevents the sperm from fertilizing eggs — and therefore the flock does not grow.
PREDICTIONS: There does not appear to be one single technology that will dominate, although the advent of emerging bird issues (a rise in population of Coragyps atratus, or black vultures, for example) dictates more innovation. We believe the market for pest birds and their control will grow more rapidly than the general pest segments. Birds have a special place in our society, and an increased focus on humane control techniques will continue to reflect that.
Tasheena Dillingham, President and CEO
RECENT INNOVATION: Through working with applicators on thousands of jobs across the country, we found that under-bidding jobs, and miscalculation of material needed for the job, were common. Our Avitrol Bird App 2.0 solves both issues because it provides a built-in bid calculator and a dilution ratio calculator. We’re happy to provide innovative tools that give “breathing room” in your bids, while fostering a healthy marketplace for pest management organizations of all sizes.
NEW LAUNCHES: We have several chemical and non-chemical based solutions in development, but the product closest to release is the Avitrol Easy Blend package. It contains a pre-measured amount of treated and untreated materials. Once mixed together by the applicator, they form a perfect 1:40 blend, which is key for limiting bait when treating sensitive sites.
PREDICTIONS: We believe future technologies will allow PMPs to deploy and cover bait in real-time, all monitored remotely via app-driven technology. Imagine bait deployment on preset timers, and pressure-plated bait housings providing up-to-the-minute data on consumption rates.
Jacob Barnes, Sales Manager
RECENT INNOVATION: Bird Banisher brings a final solution to customers who have persistently fought bird-related damage to their homes. The mechanism that increases Bird Banisher’s efficacy is that it is activated to spin in low wind conditions, and reflects light off its reflective surfaces onto the areas of concern for year-round protection.
NEW LAUNCHES: Bird Banisher just released two new versions of the original design, which provides multiple options for installation. One option is a stainless-steel clip that attaches easily to tree branches, berry vines, or anything with a thickness less than 0.5 inch; the other uses a rare-earth magnet to attach to metal surfaces for quick set-up without the use of drill bits or screws. This summer, look for yet another edition of Bird Banister that targets pest birds near water areas — to protect docks and boats from bird damage.
PREDICTIONS: Society is continually becoming better educated on the health risks associated with bird waste. This has spurred an increase in customer demand, and new products and techniques are continuing to fill the voids for effective bird control.