While some birdlife reminds us of Mother Nature’s magnificence, some visitors become like houseguests that refuse to leave. Pigeons are a growing problem in densely populated urban areas as they multiply rapidly, force other species out of the region, and leave a mess in their wake.
So, whether they are perching there for a few seconds or decide to move in, having pigeons around your home can become problematic. If you live in an apartment with a balcony that pigeons cannot seem to get enough of, here are some tips to get them to choose someone else’s balcony as a hangout spot:
Prevention is better than cure
If you are determined to keep pigeons off a balcony, your point of departure should be not letting them feel welcome in the first instance. Pigeon fanciers race these birds for their distinct, strong homing instincts. Pigeons have been known to find their way back from hundreds of miles away. Therefore, deal with them proactively before they make your balcony their preferred address.
Once pigeons find a comfortable place to nest, they settle in and begin breeding with alarming regularity. This only continues adding to the already rising pigeon population in urban areas, leading to a decline in other bird populations, such as sparrows and doves. Food sources can only sustain a set number of birds, and pigeons play a dominant role in this regard, forcing other bird populations to leave. In order to lead the fight against this issue, certain techniques must be implemented to keep pigeons off a balcony which in the long run can serve as a permanent fix for this problem.
Here are several techniques that will help to keep pigeons off a balcony, let’s discuss some of them.
Several visual deterrents might keep pigeons off your balcony, making them someone else’s problem. Like all animals, pigeons have weaknesses and things that frighten them. Shiny surfaces tend to put them off making themselves at home in an area.
Your resource requirements to make visual deterrents for pigeons for a small area like a balcony are simple. A few old CDs, some aluminum foil, and a glitter ball should do the job effectively. Thread a few CDs onto a length of fishing gut at regular intervals. String the gut from one side of the balcony to the other. As a breeze blows, the CDs will rotate and reflect the sunlight.
Long strips of aluminum foil serve a similar purpose as they flutter in a draft, and the consequent sunlight reflection deters pigeons from approaching. Put some old glittery, shiny Christmas tree baubles to good use by mounting them on stakes and planting them in flower pots on your balcony.
An imitation predator will also scare many pigeons off for good. A realistic-looking raven, eagle, hawk, or owl should do the trick. However, pigeons are wily creatures, which is why they are such good survivors. To pull the wool over their eyes, keep moving your ‘bird of prey’ around on the balcony.
Sounds that keep pigeons away may have some effect but will not generate the success you need. They tend to work for a short while only. Once pigeons become accustomed to a sound, they ignore it. Therefore, recordings of birds of prey calls or dogs barking might keep pigeons away, but they will return as soon as they realize there are no birds of prey or dogs awaiting them on your balcony.
Additionally, as you live in a communal space, you are hardly likely to score points with your neighbors for playing such odd soundtracks all day. You could face a noise complaint that leads to much unnecessary aggravation and an unfortunate decline in neighbor relations.
Products that prevent pigeons from landing on a balcony are an ideal solution to this problem. Your first option is a net that spans the balcony from top to bottom and side to side. It might not create the best aesthetic and will certainly ruin a good view to some extent. Nevertheless, it is effective and efficient. Look for netting made from something like clear fishing gut, as this minimizes how much it obscures your view.
Spike strips attached to the top of your balcony railing will prevent pigeons from landing there, making it an undesirable spot for them to congregate or inhabit. Spikes come in metal and plastic. While they might make your balcony look like the top of a prison wall, they will prevent a pigeon population problem.
Getting rid of nests
While pigeons can be stubborn creatures, even they can take a hint. If you regularly remove pigeon nests from a balcony, they get the message that they are not welcome. It might take a few attempts and the introduction of other measures mentioned before. However, if you get it right, they will no longer infest your balcony.
Be careful when removing pigeon nests. These winged pests carry ticks, fleas, and other germs that could cause severe illness. Once you dislodge a nest, all these potentially harmful organisms could land right on you. Pigeons are a health risk, so take necessary health and safety precautions when attempting to get rid of them.