Birds

Bird Control in Sydney – Uproot Nests from Your House

Birds: Facts, Identification & Control
Bird-related problems can lead to lost business, contaminated products and expensive damage to building exteriors. Some bird species harbor diseases that can be transmitted to humans and are classified as public health threats. Bird droppings are also problematic, as bird waste can ruin building finishes and create unsanitary conditions. The droppings can also be expensive to clean up. If birds become a problem, contact your pest management professional and ask him or her to develop a bird control program specifically tailored for your home or business.

Bird Control

Habitat modification usually is the best long-term solution to bird control. Reducing food availability and access to protective shelter for roosting and nesting are the fundamental objectives of any bird control program. Bird control efforts begin with a comprehensive inspection by your pest management professional and, based on the inspection findings, he or she will identify the species of bird(s) and choose the most effective exclusion methods.
Some common methods of bird exclusion include installing exclusion devices on surfaces used by birds for roosting and loafing, plus using bird screening to prevent access to bird roosting and nesting sites. Your pest management professional will employ techniques and products that are humane, efficient and effective to the target birds.

Why Bird Control Is Important

A female ant that successfully mates with a male ant will become a queen ant that lays eggs. Fertile queens select a sheltered place to begin a nest (colony) and begin laying eggs. Ant eggs are very small – only about a half of a millimeter in diameter. The eggs are also oval, white and transparent.
Population control becomes more difficult the longer unwanted roosting and nesting goes untreated. Therefore, don’t hesitate to deal with pest birds and be proactive when considering your needs for habitat modification. Some reasons for bird control include:

Bird droppings and nesting material can lead to the spread of a number of diseases and the proliferation of ectoparasites like bed bugs, chicken mites, and yellow mealworms.

  • Bird droppings can stain, corrode or otherwise damage building materials.
  • Bird droppings on sidewalks can create a safety hazard resulting in the risk of slips and falls.
  • Bird nests may create a fire hazard if located near lights or electrical equipment.
  • Birds that nest inside or around food production and warehouse facilities may contaminate equipment and products.
  • Bird nests can clog drains, thus interfering with water drainage.
  • Noise caused by a large bird population, birds roosting in trees and birds getting inside a chimney, above drop ceilings and in vents and flues.
European Starlings
Facts, Identification and Control
Latin Name

Sturnus vulgaris

Appearance

Similar in size to robins, starlings are short-tailed birds with long, narrow beaks. They vary in color from one season to the next, displaying purple-green feathers with white markings and a yellow bill in warm weather and a brownish colored body with white spots and a blue-black bill in the colder weather months.

Behavior, Diet & Habits

Troublesome to livestock owners, starlings eat animal feed and can contaminate entire batches with their droppings while doing so. The birds travel in flocks of several thousand in the winter and are prone to congregate in large numbers in residential yards. Starlings can be found just about anywhere humans reside, including cities, suburbs, and rural locations. Often seen swooping down to snatch food off the ground, starlings spend much of their time perched on trees, telephone lines, and buildings. The birds may nest in a variety of habitats, including open, grassy fields, water sources, trees, and buildings with nooks that provide suitable nesting space. Generally, starlings only avoid living in desert, chaparral, and expansive forest habitats. Although fairly large and robust, individual starlings can squeeze through a hole in a building as small as an inch in diameter.

European starlings prefer fruits and seeds, either wild or cultivated, and they frequently supplement their diet during the spring breeding season with insects such as grasshoppers, beetles, flies, caterpillars, snails, earthworms, millipedes and spiders.

Reproduction

Starlings nest with breeding in mind, and males pick nesting sites that will attract females. The birds can inhabit almost any space large enough for nests to fit. Females produce 3-6 eggs per clutch and produce 1-3 broods per year. Baby starlings hatch after about a two-week incubation period. Young starlings leave the nest within three weeks of birth. Females may attempt to deposit an egg in another female’s nest. Females that could not find a mate in the early portion of the breeding season do this most often.

Signs of a European Starling Infestation

Sightings of the birds or their nests are indicators of starling activity. The more annoying signs are their noisy chatter and messy droppings.

More Information

Since European starlings are very closely associated with our buildings and other sheltered locations, it is likely they will become a problem to homeowners and business owners. If so, be sure to contact your pest management professional and request his or her assistance in developing a bird management plan. Your pest management professional will provide a comprehensive inspection and based on the findings, prepare an effective and efficient plan for reducing or eliminating bird-related issues.

Pigeons (Rock Doves)
Facts, Identification and Control
Latin Name

Columba livia

Appearance

Pigeons are large birds with small heads and short legs. They have dark, blue-gray heads with glossy yellow, greenish and reddish-purple markings along their neck and wing feathers and a grayish-pink bill. Two dark bands are usually seen on the wings and there is a single dark band across the tail. However, there is a great deal of color variation with this bird. For example, flocks may be mixed with birds featuring plain, pale, spotted, or rusty-red patterns.

Behavior, Diet & Habits

Pigeons walk or run with their heads bobbing forward and back. They feed in the morning and early afternoon and return to their nests or other protected areas to take cover at night. Pigeons reuse the same nests, and they don’t care too much about nest cleanliness. Unlike many other birds, their repeated reuse of nests without cleaning out the nest debris means that in time a nest may develop into a durable mound of debris, feces and the remains of both unhatched eggs and dead baby birds.

Pigeons often gather in flocks to feed. When frightened the flock may suddenly fly into the air and circle several times before coming down again to resume feeding. Pigeons are one of the more common birds found in cities and towns, but they readily nest in farm buildings, as well.

Pigeons prefer fruit and seeds but will eat just about any food items they find on the ground.

Also, pigeons in cities frequently consume popcorn, bread, cake, peanuts and almost any food litter left by people.

Reproduction

Pigeons pair with each other for life. The male builds the nest where eggs are laid in a clutch of about 1-3 eggs. It takes about 19 days for the eggs to hatch after being laid. Both parents incubate the eggs – the male incubates eggs from mid-morning to late afternoon and the female incubates the eggs in late afternoon and overnight to mid-morning the next day. Both parents feed the young by regurgitating a milky liquid.

Signs of a Pigeon Infestation

The most obvious infestation signs are seeing pigeons hanging out or roosting on or near buildings or parks. Droppings can also indicate that a location is a common roosting, loafing, nesting, or feeding area. Hearing cooing or seeing nests on ledges can also indicate pigeon infestation.

More Information

Most urban residents consider pigeons one of the most serious pest animals, an obvious fact when one considers the annoyance and disease transmission potential of pigeons. Since pigeons are so closely associated with our buildings and other sheltered locations, it is likely they will become a problem to homeowners and business owners. If so, be sure to contact your pest management professional and request his or her assistance in developing a bird management plan. Your pest management professional will provide a comprehensive inspection and based on the findings, prepare an effective and efficient plan for reducing or eliminating bird-related issues.