How to get rid of doves and pigeons

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How to get rid of doves and pigeons
Pigeons can be a nuisance and create an unsanitary environment. (pigeons image by Ozgur Aydin from

Many people enjoy watching birds and go out of their way to attract them into their yard. Bird feeders, birdbaths and birdhouses create an inviting environment for a variety of birds. However, what do you do when the birds are unwelcome, pesky guests that you'd like to be rid of? Nuisance birds often create problems because of their large numbers, droppings and feathers left behind. They also create nests in inconvenient places such as gutters, eaves and attics. When you want to deter nuisance birds, there are several approaches available.

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  1. 1

    Purchase an ultrasonic sound device to scare birds away. These devices emit sounds undetectable to humans, but which are unpleasant to birds. Cheaper models, which are good for a 300-square-metre (1,000-square-foot) range, are available, or more expensive models range up to 1,000-square-metre (3,600-square-foot) range. Ultrasonic devices are usually weatherproof and appropriate for outdoor use year-round.

  2. 2

    Purchase an artificial owl or hawk. Many birds are scared off by the presence of these predators. While a stationary owl may not do the trick, there are models equipped with moving parts, such as a rotating head, light-up eyes and a motion-activated hoot. Decoy hawks are primarily visual repellents. Decoys can act as a deterrent to rodents also.

    How to get rid of doves and pigeons
    Artificial owls are a deterrent to nuisance birds and rodents. (owl image by Henryk Olszewski from
  3. 3

    Purchase a sonic bird repellent. These units produce bird distress calls and predator calls which can be heard by humans and birds. A variety of bird calls are available depending on the type of bird you want to eliminate. If you don't mind the sound of bird calls or actually find them pleasant, this unit is an option.

  4. 4

    Eliminate any source of food or water in your yard. Do not place bird feeders out to attract other types of birds. Do not install a birdbath. Clean up thoroughly after picnics. Remove any containers in which water collects. If there's nothing to attract pigeons and doves to your yard, your problem may resolve of its own accord.

  5. 5

    Purchase and install bird spikes. As horrendous as this may sound, bird spikes do not hurt birds. They simply make it difficult for them to land on railings, gutters, rooftops and other attractive areas. Available in varying lengths, bird spikes come in easy-to-install strips.

Tips and warnings

  • Be willing to try different methods. If one doesn't work for you, another will. Each situation is unique, but a solution is possible.
  • Consider calling in an expert if the birds continue to be a problem. Bird control services are always an option.
  • Avoid shooting, trapping or poisoning nuisance birds. There are many more effective, less harmful ways to go about bird elimination.

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