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How to get rid (for good) of pigeons

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    How to get rid (for good) of pigeons

    Our yard's neighbours (farmers) complained that the paddocks were dusty and that this dust ended on their crops. So the yard's manager first fenced the paddocks' perimetre with shade sails and an automatic watering sprinklers, but strong winds teared the sails, so in the end they built a wall all around the perimetre of the paddocks.

    Now we have the paddocks infested with pigeons. They have started to roost in the roof and they invade the aisles inside the buildings. Some horses kill them (inadvertently I suposse) but still there are too many of them.

    We have tried the fake owls system, but they got used very rapidly.

    Does anyone know of an effective method, or a combination of methods to get rid of them?

    Invite a resident owl?

    We had a pigeon problem in our covered arena.
    An owl moved in and there are few other birds in there now.
    Owl is fat and happy.

    Local grain elevators hire teenagers with airguns over weekends and those make a dent in the numbers.
    Around here, those kinds of pigeons are called flying rats.
    They can carry diseases like histoplasmosis.
    Not good commensals to have around.

    There are commercial poisoning products approved for that problem, one Avitrol. A pest control company may be able to help you.

    You may have to use bird spikes where they roost, Gemplers sells them.


      Dust from the paddocks drifting onto crops, that is a new complaint for me... I believe I would have used mag chloride rather than building the frames for the sails

      or used compacted decomposed granite in the paddocks


        Years ago I worked in a building that had a huge pigeon problem. They tried owl statues, fake snakes on the window sills, pigeon spikes, hot wire on the window sills, and nothing worked. The only thing that got rid of them for a week or so is when our building got bombed, and the pigeons got scared, but the next week they were back.

        The only real way is a bunch of people with BB guns, knock down the nests, and no bird feeders, ever.
        You can't fix stupid-Ron White


          First, if you feed them, they will come. As was said, no bird feeders. And no other sources of food. In a previous barn where I boarded, owner had young stock living out and he grained them in long trough feeders. Pigeon situation was ridiculous--they would snack outside, then nest in the indoor.

          Once food source is removed:
          Originally posted by JanM View Post
          The only real way is a bunch of people with BB guns, knock down the nests, and no bird feeders, ever.
          Or one person with BB gun who is a good shot. And persists.


            Originally posted by eternalbeginner View Post

            Now we have the paddocks infested with pigeons. They have started to roost in the roof and they invade the aisles inside the buildings. Some horses kill them (inadvertently I suposse) but still there are too many of them.

            We have tried the fake owls system, but they got used very rapidly.

            Does anyone know of an effective method, or a combination of methods to get rid of them?
            I manage our pest control program at work and birds are something that we have to address. Here are what I would do:
            1. Remove/block access to their roosting locations. Invest in pigeon spikes to prevent them landing and bird netting to block access to other areas they want to hang out.
            2. Knock their nests down. See a nest? Knock it down and block access to the area after.
            3. Remove as much of the access to food as you can. Make sure your storage is pest resistant. Depending on your neighbor's crop that may be hard.
            4. As others have recommended shoot them
            5. Possibly invest in a call box. this works until the birds figure out there are no predators around.
            6. Invest in a barn cat or 3. They will go after smaller birds/fledglings and act as a deterrent.
            I personally do not recommend poison as it can bleed into non-target birds and can get you in trouble with the EPA.


              Take up falconry?


                If you poison the birds and they fly somewhere to die, you can poison the neighbors dogs, cats and any other predators (like foxes or birds of prey) that happen to eat the sick or injured birds. I do not use poison for any reason.

                The best defense is screening or bird proofing areas. I'm also betting you could get someone out with a bb gun to hunt them. Some fireworks might work if you haven't tried that yet.


                  An excellent solution to bird infestations is snakes. Obviously I'm talking about actual, live snakes here. Snakes also provide excellent rodent control.


                    A few years ago my neighbors had two pairs of pigeons that had taken up residence in his barn and were making a horrible mess, pooping everywhere. It was disgusting.

                    I planned to temporarily move two of my horses over to their barn one summer, but wanted to get rid of the pigeons first. Fake owl statue (useless), fiercer looking fake hawk statue (just as useless as the owl), BB gun (which I used once, missed the bird and put a hole through the barn roof and subsequently decided a gun wasn't a terribly good idea), and throwing rocks (out of frustration - all it did was amuse the birds and the rocks end up littering the barn aisle which meant I had to pick them all up) did nothing. I ended up talking to an old man who raised pigeons (ever since he was a boy), and he told me what to do to get rid of them easily and completely.

                    First, get a long handled open weave net- one that you will find in a sporting goods store in the fishing department. Also get/borrow a dog or cat airline shipping crate/kennel - one with a handle.

                    Second, set up a ladder next to or beneath where the pigeons nest at night. Leave the travel crate there at the foot of the ladder.

                    Third, wait until dark. Using a flashlight, spot the bird(s) where they are nesting for the night. Climb the ladder and use your fishing net to get the bird. They don't/can't fly at night so they are "sitting ducks" so to speak. They just perch there, looking at you, not moving an inch. Makes them very easy to net. You can also grab them barehanded (he said while demonstrating to me how to lock their wings together so they can't fly) but I preferred my net. Put the captured bird(s) in the crate.

                    Fourth, the next morning either dispatch the captured pigeons with your BB gun, give them to someone who wants to breed and raise clutches, or take them at least 200 miles away to release them. Remember, pigeons are incredible "homers" and any closer than 200 miles to release means they may just fly straight back home. And you're back where you started.

                    I ended up giving my neighbor's pigeons to the pigeon guy who ended up trading them to another pigeon guy who (as far as I know) still has them. In captivity. My neighbor's barn has been pigeon free ever since. The big 'ol fishing net is still hanging on his barn wall like a trophy. The hawk and owl statues are in my barn, gathering dust.


                      Hate to say it, but a BB gun. We had pigeons as well for a few years in our loft. They pooped on our hay and are just a PITA. We blocked all holes that we could, but they are pretty sneaky and still got in.

                      My husband who has never shot anything or even held a gun before, bought a BB gun and shot a few of them. The others seemed scared and flew away. That was in the spring and the few that flew away have never been back. We are now pigeon free!