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Bird Control Blog - A Bird Expert's Journal

This weblog chronicles some of the adventures I have had while operating my wildlife removal company in Orlando, FL - Click any of the photos for a larger image and more information.

04.20.2008 - Pigeons in the Attic - Get Them Out
Pigeons thrive in urban areas. They are one of the few animals that thrives with people in general. They like to live on buildings, and they like to live in buildings, and this means that they like to live in the attics of homes when they can get access. I deal with many cases of pigeons in attics each year. The first step is to remove all of the pigeons. I accomplish this via a number of tactics, from the use of one-way exclusion devices to physical removal. The second step is to seal off all of the entry points so that no more pigeons can enter the building again. The third ...click for more

01.25.2008 - Pigeon Trap to Get Pigeons Out of a House
Pigeons are opportunistic animals. Like any animal, they need shelter, and the females seek out a safe place in which to raise young. Just as is the case with raccoons, squirrels, rats, and other animals, pigeons have found that the attics of homes make an ideal place to live - they're safe from the weather, dry, warm, and safe from predators. Thus, pigeons love to live in the attics of homes when possible. They need a certain amount of room in order to enter and exit. In this case, it's a classic scenario. This house has a barrel tile roof, one of the eaves, ...click for more

11.01.2007 - Bird Spikes for Pigeon Repellent
Pigeons love to roost on store signs. This is a very common problem in urban areas. Signs such as the one in the above photo provide a suitable ledge for the birds to establish nesting areas. Oftentimes these signs are in mini-malls or other areas with ready access to food, such as from nearby restaurants and people. Of course, no shop owner wants pigeons roosting on his or her store sign. The birds make quite a mess with their nesting material, feathers, and of course, droppings. You can see some small accumulations of pigeon poo on the sign above, and a lot ...click for more

09.19.2007 - Pigeon Poop - Droppings & Waste in Attic
I did a pigeon removal project at this residential house. The homeowner heard noises in the attic. At first he thought that he was hearing rodents, such as rats or squirrels. However, one look at the evidence shown above, and I knew that I was dealing with a pigeon infestation. Pigeons love to live in attics, just like other wild animals such as raccoons or mice. And just like any animal that lives in an attic, they leave their waste behind. In the above photo, we see some of the remnants of the pigeon presence - the pigeon poop. As with any wildlife job, first thing ...click for more

05.08.2007 - Vulture Removal & Control
Vultures! Those harbingers of death! Those dark-caped masqueraders of the other world! Those connoisseurs of roadkill! Yes, vultures. These vultures in this photo are not Turkey Vultures Cathartes aura, but rather American Black Vultures Coragyps atratus which are more common in the south. They are congregating around an armadillo carcass for unknown reasons. Ha, I always wanted to say that. They are actually there to eat the armadillo carcass for the purposes of nutrition. When they eat the armadillo carcass, they will digest it and then later on they will poop...click for more

03.16.2007 - Pigeon Disease - Diseases from Birds
Ever since I was a small lad, I was taught not to pick up bird feathers, as I was told they were dirty. Many birds are in fact dirty, especially the "flying rat" or "gutter bird", also known as the pigeon. These birds often live in cities or buildings, and they make quite a mess with their feathers, nesting material, and most of all, waste. The waste can accumulate in heavy amounts inside buildings, such as in the ceiling of the office building pictured above. Here are some of the more serious diseases associated with bird infestation in public areas and buildings. The Histoplasmosis...click for more

11.30.2006 - Guinea Hen Capture
Now here's a new catch! A Guinea Hen! I suspect that this fine bird was someone's pet, and then it either escaped or was abandoned. Either way, it wound up living on the steps at an apartment complex that I regularly service. This time, instead of removing squirrels from the attic 3-stories high, I removed this feathery friend. Apparently the maintenance crew tried repeatedly to catch it and chase it away, but it stubbornly resisted capture and chasing, and had been living on a particular flight of stairs for approximately a week, and thus I was called onto the sc ...click for more

11.02.2006 - Removal of a Hawk From Aeropostale Store
I got a call today about a hawk stuck in a retail store. I arrived on the scene - a trendy shopping district in Orlando, and entered the address - an Aeropostale clothing store. Sure enough, I saw a hawk perched amongst the rafters at the ceiling of the building (see upper left). Apparently the store managers had left the door open, and the bird was flying low and erratically because it was carrying its favorite prey in its talons: a pigeon. Perhaps other pigeons were chasing the hawk (a behavior I've seen several times, once a hawk has a victim in its claws) & the hawk ...click for more

09.03.2006 - Florida Pigeon Control
This is a typical example of a pigeon problem at an urban building. In this case, it was an auto repair shop in Orlando. I have split the photo into two parts - on the top is the area where the pigeons roost on steel beams below a metal roof. Below is the ground that is covered with pigeon droppings. The owners of the auto store clean the droppings often, but the birds keep making a fresh mess all the time. Pigeons are a common problem bird in Florida. Specifically, the urban pigeons that cause these problems are often called Feral Pigeons or Rock Pigeons, and even ...click for more

06.29.2006 - Chimney Swift Removal
Each June, I receive many calls about a terrific racket coming from inside a chimney. I've heard all sorts of explanations, everything from "family of squirrels" to "there's a rattlesnake in my chimney!". These explanations are wrong. It's Chimney Swifts (Chaetura pelagica). The Chimney Swift is one of North America's more remarkable birds. They are fantastic fliers: they catch their food, insects, on the wing, and even snatch up nesting twigs on the wing. They use these twigs to build a nest, which they adhere to the wall of a cavern using special sticky saliva. In nature ...click for more

03.18.2006 - Pigeon Contamination from Bird Infestation
This is a serious case of contamination due to pigeon infestation. Worse yet, it occured in a public building, in the primary air duct. Even worse, it was in a public school. Worse still, the school refused to pay for cleanup, thereby exposing the entire school staff and students to the diseases that pigeon contamination can bring. Pigeon contamination is serious, and can result in these health risks, such as Histoplasmosis: likely the most common disease associated with pigeons and bird contamination. Histoplasmosis is a fungal lung disease that is found ...click for more

01.20.2006 - Pigeon Control at Orlando Car Dealership
An Orlando area car dealership called me with a common urban problem: pigeons. The pigeons were roosting in several areas of the dealership, most notably on the raftors in the parking garage and on the concrete wall above the showroom doors. The problem with pigeons is that they eat, which often means that they eventually poop. Pigeon poo is a problem. It's not just unsightly, it's caustic, and corrosive. This means that the pigeon droppings that fell on the cars in the parking facility actually damaged the paint jobs of these new autos. A manager at the dealer ...click for more

12.27.2005 - Pigeon Spike Installation
This is a typical example of a pigeon spike installation project. I performed it at an office building. Pigeons were roosting on the ledges above the main doors. They caused the usual pigeon problems - nesting material, feathers, and of course the main problem; lots of pigeon poo. The pigeon droppings fell down onto the ground below, causing unisghtly and unsanitary conditions for the hundreds of people who entered the building daily. I inspected the problem and determined that pigeons spikes were the best answer. The concept is fairly simple the birds are...click for more

10.10.2005 - Duck Removal & Control
I took this duck photo at Lake Eola. Ducks are welcome at Lake Eola, and no one that I know of is attempting duck removal there. However, I have been called several times for duck removal. Most commonly, this is when ducks have taken up residence in a person's pool, and will not leave. I will describe two scenarios in which I performed successful duck removal. The first was for a homeowner whose personal pool became the personal home to a mating pair of Mallard Ducks. The ducks would not leave the area. They had not established a nest, but they chosen ...click for more

06.20.2005 - Do Plastic Owls Keep Away Pigeons?
One of the great jokes of the nuisance wildlife control industry is the use of fake plastic owls for pigeon control. The theory is simple enough. We know that pigeons are terrified of one of their natural predators: owls. Thus, why not use owl decoys to scare away pigeons? Unfortunately, it doesn't work in practice. It might be the equivalent of some nuisance human control operator setting up a fake plastic boogie man (or IRS auditor, mother-in-law, insert scary human here) by your front door in hopes that it'll keep you from entering your own home. It just won't work...click for more

03.14.2005 - Pigeon Trapping in Cage Traps
The majority of the time, pigeon control centers around abatement practices - the installation of physical deterrents that prevent them from roosting in undesirable areas. An example is the installation of pigeon spikes on a store sign in order to prevent them from landing on the sign. However, at times pigeon trapping and removal is a desirable solution. For example the building may be too large in order for spike removal to be cost effective. Or perhaps the pigeons are roosting on or in an area where spikes or other deterrents won't fit or can't be installed. ...click for more

02.18.2005 - Sandhill Crane Removal
Sandhill Cranes, Grus canadensis are fairly common in Florida. They are a very large bird, with a wingspan of about six feet. I've read that they are the oldest known extant bird species, with unchanged fossils going back 10 million years. As a dominant bird species, they are usually fearless of other birds and most other animals, including humans. They became a nuisance in this parking lot of this company, where they routinely threatened the employees and customers with agressive behavior. I was called in for Sandhill Crane control. I am not ...click for more

11.24.2004 - Dead Pigeons in Ceiling
I found these dead pigeons in the ductwork of a public building. They had an open mushroom vent on the roof, and a large colony of pigeons was entering the ducts and living there. They made a huge mess in the ducts, complete with nests, eggs, a ton of droppings, and quite a few dead birds. Pigeons are often filthy animals, and they simply do not keep clean quarters. They don't live long in cities, and like any other wild animal, carry some risk of disease. They are known, in particular, to be susceptible to salmonellosis, tuberculosis, and ornithosis, but we know ...click for more

05.22.2004 - Removal of a Peacock from a Roof
Here in Florida we've got a few resident populations of peacocks. One of the flocks lives in one small specific area in Conway, off of Michigan Road. I'd get calls all the time about these peacocks, with numerous requests to remove them. I couldn't really do anything about it, but I did manage to keep them off this particular roof. They always roosted on this roof, and since they're a large and proud bird, they made a hell of a lot of noise, and it bothered the homeowners a great deal. I installed a special motion sensitive squirt-gun device on the roof. Anything that ...click for more

02.19.2004 - Professional Pigeon Project in Orlando
This gift store in Orlando, on International Drive, had a pigeon problem. The pigeons were roosting on the steel beams that held up the decorative (not functional) Space Shuttle. This of course means that they pooped all over the ground below this area, right near the front door. Thus, all of the customers who entered the store had to walk through pigeon poop to do it. Patronage was dropping. Sales of gifts were dropping. Profits were dropping. All because pigeon droppings were dropping. So, the owners called me and asked if I could make the pigeons go away. I said that I ...click for more

02.04.2004 - Urban Pigeon Removal at Water Park
This is an example of an urban pigeon removal job that I performed at a water park here in Orlando FL. You can see the water slides in the background of this photo. The water park, Wet-N-Wild, was concerned about the presence of pigeons in the park. They were a constant nuisance - not only flocking around the park and eating scraps left by park visitors, but most of all, nesting on the buildings and leaving behind nesting debris, feathers, and of course, the big problem - pigeon droppings. The droppings were unsightly and unsanitary. Pigeon poop is primary...click for more

01.29.2004 - Pigeon Exclusion - Get Pigeons Out of Building
I was called out to this apartment building because it had a problem with pigeons roosting in the attics. Many of the apartment units had these large square openings in the stairwells. The openings led right into the roof and attics of the apartments. Pigeons eventually found these openings, and they provided access to a perfectly safe habitat - the attics. Many pairs of pigeons had established nests in the attic space. This caused a number of problems. First of all, the tenants of the apartments had to deal with a lot of noise coming from up above - this noise was ...click for more

11.20.2003 - Pigeon Control BB Gun Shooting
Most of the time, pigeon control is done via the installation of deterrent devices. So for example, if pigeons are roosting in an undesirable area, I can install a deterrent such as bird spikes to prevent them from nesting in that area. In addition, at times I can set special pigeon traps to trap and remove the birds. However, in certain situations, lethal control is the only answer. This type of pigeon work is fairly common in the industry. If pigeons are scattered about in a facility, and it's unfeasible to install deterrents, and the conditions don't allow for trapping and the trapped ...click for more

08.08.2003 - Owl Removal - Stuck in Pool Area
I got a phone call from a worried homeowner who informed me that she had an owl stuck in her screened-in pool enclosure, or lenai, as we call them here in Florida. I told her that I'd come out right away, so I did. I arrived, and found a small owl perching on the steel beam, as seen in the upper-left of the above photo. It was still and sleeping. I have a special heavy-duty canvas net that I use for certain wildlife removal scenarios. I got the net. I quietly sneaked up on the unsuspecting and sleepy owl. Then, with one swift and smooth swipe of the net, not unlike the one ...click for more

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