Birds build nests in eaves to provide protection from the elements. While this is practical for the bird, it's impractical for the homeowner, since nests can look unsightly and cause property damage. Keeping birds out of the eaves involves using visual deterrents, sound deterrents and hardware to frighten birds from current nests and prevent future nests from being built. These methods are implemented in the fall after baby birds have flown the nest and in the spring before the birds arrive to lay eggs.
Use sound deterrents near the nest, such as audio recordings of the bird distress calls, to frighten birds away. Play the recordings 90 minutes before dusk, just as the birds are nesting. Repeat this process until the birds move.
Hang shiny, visual deterrents around the eaves to scare the birds. These include aluminium foil, reflective tape, aluminium pie plates and mylar balloons filled with helium. Hang non-reflective, visual deterrents, such as windsocks and windmills, on the corner of the home to act as scarecrows.
Affix plastic netting or porcupine wire from the edge of the eaves to block access to the nest.
Install small wood boards at a 45-degree angle under and between the eaves to prevent nesting. Make sure to seal holes or gaps under the eaves with hardware cloth.
Things you need
- Audio recordings of bird distress calls
- Aluminium foil
- Reflective tape
- Aluminium pie plates
- Mylar balloons
- Helium tank
- Plastic netting
- Porcupine wire
- Wood boards
- Hardware cloth
- Illinois Department of Public Health Prevention and Control: Bird Exclusion and Dispersal
- Kansas State University; Birds, Urban Wildlife Damage Control; Charles Lee, et al.
- Iowa State University; Problem Birds Around Homes and Farmsteads; Georgia Bryan, et al.
- Cornell Lab of Ornithology: Frequently Asked Questions
- Cornell Lab of Ornithology: General Woodpecker Deterrents