The feral pigeon is well recognised by anyone who uses public spaces like shopping centres or any town or city in the UK. They will eat the scraps that humans leave behind; sandwiches, crisp left-overs and any other detritus we casually toss away. Originally, descendants of the Rock Dove they’re usually grey with white flashes, an orange eye and a white ‘ridge’ at the top of their beak.
The pest problem
Because they have very successfully adapted to live in towns, they’re a public nuisance and the biggest danger pigeons present is their guano (this stains buildings, blocks drains and gutters and is a serious health hazard in its own right) Furthermore, nesting materials can block down-spouts and gutters, leading to flooding and general damage to buildings.
Dealing with pigeons
Depending on the severity of the problem and the environment they’re in, there are a number of ways of addressing a population of pigeons and proofing a building against their nesting or roosting usually involves a combination of netting and anti-bird spikes or an electrical system that administers a small shock to a bird as it lands.
Often, a small-scale cull is required to remove the last of the persistent offenders and on-going maintenance is paramount to ensure the protection remains intact and functional; netting gets damaged, spikes need to be kept free of debris and an electrical system needs the connections checked and so on. As with most problems, a survey needs to be conducted to establish the severity of the problem so a bespoke solution can be created.