Pigeon Health Hazards and Pest Control Methods

Home & Garden Blog

If you have noticed pigeons on your property, then you're probably concerned by the fact that the birds seem to grow in number each year. The simple fact that the birds keep returning to your home may cause alarm as well. Pigeons do have pretty distinctive nesting habits and will nest in and return to a single area over and over again.

Pigeons can cause a great deal of mess as well as some health issues. Keep reading to learn about some of these issues and also how to get rid of the pigeons humanely.

What Health Issues Can Be Caused By Pigeons?

Pigeons cause myriad health problems, and these issues develop when you are exposed to relatively large quantities of droppings. The bad news is that pigeons, like other medium sized birds, will defecate quite frequently. Specifically, a pigeon can release excrement about once every 10 to 20 minutes. The vast majority of the excrement is released near the pigeon's nest. If the nest is near or inside your home, then this means a lot of fecal material that you can come into contact with. 

The good news is that infections caused by pigeon fecal material are common only if you have a compromised immune system. Young children and the elderly may be susceptible to the infections as well. Both bacterial and fungal infections are a concern. The bacterial infection you need to worry about is called psittacosis or parrot fever. If you develop that ailment you will have a high fever, diarrhea, and joint pain. You may also form either a mild or serious case of pneumonia. 

Fungal infections associated with pigeon droppings include histoplasmosis and cryptococcosis. Fungal cells enter the lungs as the airborne fecal matter is inhaled. This causes a fungal infection in the tissues that can be quite serious. 

In addition to infections, parasites are an issue that you need to be concerned with, especially bird mites that often develop on young pigeons. These mites can bite frequently and are quite unpleasant if you or your family members come into contact with them. 

How Can Pigeons Be Handled Humanely?

There are quite a few pest control methods that can be used to drive pigeons away from the home. Live trapping and relocation is something that can be completed by a professional pest control company, but the pigeons may still return to their nesting area, so this may not solve the problem.

The best way to get rid of the pests is to create an environment that is not pigeon friendly. Start by installing bird or pigeon spikes on the eaves of your home and anywhere else where pigeons land and gather. These spikes eliminate the flat areas where the birds can easily land. You should understand that the spikes may look quite deadly, but they are not sharp and will not injure pigeons who may try to land near them. 

Bird netting across open spaces can help to eliminate nesting areas as well. You should also remove any nests that you note around the exterior of your home. Place liquid repellents in these areas as well that are made with hot spices or gels that are unpleasant to pigeons.

Another good and long-term solution is to offer pigeons food that contains a specific chemical agent that causes pigeons to produce eggs that cannot be fertilized. Since these eggs will not produce viable hatchlings, the pigeon population will reduce around your property within the course of a few years. 

If you are unsure about the pigeon control methods that will work best around your home, speak with a pest control specialist. 

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23 June 2017

Stepping into Greenhouse Gardening

My name is Michelle Landon. When I was a little girl, I loved helping my mother and grandmother in the garden. My passion for gardening grew, and in my adult years, it became my number one hobby. I have lived in apartments and mastered the art of having container gardens. I now have over an acre of land and can grow just about anything. My dream was to one day have a greenhouse and be able to grow all the flowers my heart desired. Six years ago I got my first small greenhouse and was able to start bringing my gardening dream to fruition. Today I have two greenhouses and working in them is even better than I imagined. I would like to share my greenhouse gardening experiences with you.