Step 1 in Pigeon Control: Know your enemy
The melodic twittering of birds can make for beautiful background noise and have a relaxing effect on the listener. But, beware! All this changes when they invite themselves over for a permanent tea party, at your expense!
Off the cuff, it is important to identify one's enemy; to really understand what they look like, how they walk and talk. You need to enter the mind of the bird brain - so to speak - to understand these feathery fiends. After carefully analysis of their behavior and implementing bird identification tactics, one can put in place a bird proofing plan to get rid of pigeons and prevent them from taking over.
So, what are we dealing with here?
The Feral Pigeon (Columbia livia) AKA city dove, city pigeon or street pigeon is the descendant of the wild Rock Dove that naturally inhabited sea-cliffs and mountains. Since then, Feral Pigeons have traded the seascape for urban areas, and are known to roost on roof tops, eaves, windowsills and ledges.
These suspects can be identified by their short tails and long, strong wings. This blue-grey, red-footed suspect is 32-37cm in length, with a wingspan of around 64-72 cm, weighing in at 350g.
Key traits of the Feral Pigeon:
These avians are known to breed when the supply of food is plentiful (their buffet of foodstuffs includes berries, insects, seeds and leftovers eg. fast food), however freezing temperatures, lack of food and lack of shelter slows down their breeding. Because of their year-round food supply, pigeons will breed continuously, laying eggs up to six times a year! Both parents incubate the eggs, so there is quite a good chance of survival. To top that off, they are also extroverted critters, preferring to appear in groups of 50-100.
Pigeons choose nesting sites such as abandoned buildings, roof spaces, gutters, air conditioners, chimney pots and external ledges as their prime locations. Did you know that pigeons will even use their own droppings to make a nest?
Pigeons walk with a suave head-bobbing movement, which researchers suggest is a vision aid, and talk with a 'cooing' sound. My motto is 'trust no one', so armed with the above knowledge, I must say these birds are starting to ruffle even my feathers.
If one does not watch out and implement pigeon control tactics, these birds might soon infiltrate the human settlements and force us humans elsewhere!
Step 2 in Pigeon Control: Identify the signs of a bird infestation
Pigeons are a haven of diseases and parasites and leave behind shocking evidence of their presence in the form of:
- Bird droppings
- Structural damage
- Health threats
As these birds pose a high threat level, it is important to understand the risks and know how to get rid of pigeons that are roosting on your property.
Be on the lookout for the next blog on getting rid of pigeons on your premises and how to further identify to risks and dangers that pigeons pose. Once we can hone in on our enemy, we can target their nesting area with bird proofing tactics (all humane, of course!).
From bird control headquarters, over and out.
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