Pigeons are common in gardens, city parks, and public areas. These birds are widely known for their cooing sounds and unique behaviors, but have you ever wondered why there are so many pigeons in your garden?
The answer lies in the fact that pigeons are attracted to gardens because they provide a good source of food and shelter. Gardens often have trees and bushes that provide a perfect nesting place for pigeons, and the abundance of seeds, berries, and insects makes them an ideal feeding ground.
If you’re curious to know more about why these birds have become such a common sight in gardens, keep reading!
What Attracts Pigeons to Gardens?
There are various reasons why gardens tend to be a preferred destination for pigeons. Knowledge of these factors can aid in devising strategies to reduce the attractiveness of your garden to these birds. The following are some typical characteristics of gardens that draw pigeons:
This avian species exhibits opportunistic feeding behaviors and possesses a diverse palate, consuming a wide array of sustenance. Within the confines of gardens, pigeons are known to be drawn to a plethora of food sources, including but not limited to seeds, grains, fruits, and vegetables, that commonly thrive in such environments.
Bird feeders, in particular, serve as a significant point of attraction for these birds. Additionally, they have been observed to consume food scraps that are often carelessly discarded by humans, including baked goods and bread.
Shelter and Nesting
If your garden has large trees, bushes, or other vegetation, these can provide ideal sheltering opportunities for pigeons. They tend to nest in elevated, protected areas and have easy access to food and water sources.
Gardens that have tall trees or dense vegetation can, therefore, be considered prime targets for pigeon nesting.
Apart from food sources, gardens that feature water sources are also attractive to pigeons. This is because these birds require a regular supply of water for drinking and preening purposes.
Some features such as fountains, bird baths, and ponds are likely to attract pigeons as they provide a reliable source of water. Moreover, these water sources tend to be near food sources, making it easy for pigeons to access both at the same time.
Certain plant species have been observed to be preferred by pigeons as part of their diet, including broccoli, sprouts, cabbages, cauliflower, cherries, lilacs, and peas. As a result, gardens that contain these specific plant species may be more attractive to pigeons.
Access to Open Spaces
Gardens that provide expansive and unimpeded vistas are also highly appealing to the avian species known as the pigeon. These creatures necessitate unambiguous and unobstructed areas to facilitate their launch and descent, as well as for detecting any possible dangers.
Therefore, gardens with open spaces are more likely to attract pigeons as they offer a safe and comfortable environment for these birds to rest and forage for food.
What Problems Do Pigeons Cause in Gardens?
Despite their seemingly innocuous nature, pigeons present a host of challenges for horticulturists. Gardeners must be mindful of the numerous problems that these birds can create within their gardens.
Below are several of the most prevalent issues that are associated with pigeons and their presence in garden environments.
As previously stated, avian species display a proclivity towards specific flora. They exhibit a diverse dietary preference which encompasses vegetables, fruits, and floral specimens. This phenomenon poses a significant challenge for horticulturists endeavoring to cultivate crops or uphold a specific garden design.
The potential health risks associated with pigeons are noteworthy, as they are known carriers of a diverse range of diseases, such as salmonella and histoplasmosis. These illnesses can be transmitted to humans via contact with pigeon excreta or nesting materials.
Pigeons are notorious for causing damage to garden structures, particularly when they have established a nesting site. The acidic content in their droppings can corrode and erode building materials, leading to costly repairs and property damage.
Additionally, pigeon nests can clog gutters and drainage systems, causing water damage and other related issues.
Attracting Other Pests
The presence of pigeons in a garden can also attract other pests, such as rodents and insects, which can further damage crops and vegetation. Pigeon droppings can also attract flies and other insects, creating an unsanitary environment for humans and other animals.
How Can You Control Pigeons in Your Garden?
Knowing the significant problems caused by pigeons in gardens, it is normal that everyone would want to take measures to keep these birds away.
Fortunately, numerous methods are available to control pigeon populations on your property. Below are several effective approaches for keeping pigeons out of your garden:
Set up Decoys
One effective method for controlling pigeon populations in your garden is by setting up decoys. These include fake owls, snakes, or birds of prey, which can be placed in strategic locations around your garden to deter pigeons from entering.
These decoys can be purchased from garden centers or online stores and are easy to install. However, moving the decoys around frequently is essential to prevent the pigeons from becoming accustomed to them.
Install Physical Barriers
An efficacious approach to regulating the presence of pigeons in your garden is through the implementation of physical obstructions. These obstructions may consist of netting, spikes, and wire mesh.
- Netting is a lightweight material that is suspended above plants or other locations where pigeons are inclined to perch.
- Spikes are constructed from plastic, metal, or other materials and are placed on ledges, windowsills, and other areas where pigeons may settle or nest.
- Wire mesh is an additional effective method for deterring pigeons from entering your garden. It can be erected around plants or other locations where pigeons are prone to perch.
Use Sonic Devices
There are also sonic devices available that emit high-frequency sounds that are unpleasant to pigeons but inaudible to humans. These devices are effective in deterring pigeons from entering your garden, but they can be expensive.
Cleaning and Maintenance
Keeping your garden clean and tidy is also important in controlling pigeons. Pigeons are attracted to areas with food scraps, so make sure to clean up any food waste or spilled birdseed. Additionally, keep your garden free of clutter, such as old pots or debris, which can provide hiding places for pigeons.
Remove Food Sources
The specific foods that attract pigeons include seeds, grains, and fruits. If you have bird feeders in your garden, try to keep them as clean as possible to prevent the buildup of food waste. Alternatively, consider removing the feeders altogether if pigeons are becoming a problem.
Deter Pigeons From Your Garden Without Harming Them
How Do Pigeons Thrive in Urban Environments and Gardens?
Pigeons’ success in urban environments and gardens can be attributed to their adaptability and resourcefulness. These birds have evolved to exploit human-made structures for nesting and roosting opportunities, while also benefiting from the availability of abundant food sources such as discarded leftovers. Their resilience, paired with their ability to navigate cities, allows pigeons to thrive amidst bustling urban landscapes and find sanctuary in well-tended gardens.
Pigeons can be a nuisance in gardens due to their attraction to food sources, roosting areas, and nesting sites. They can cause damage to plants and structures, as well as pose health risks with their droppings.
However, there are various methods for controlling pigeons in your garden, such as removing food sources, using deterrents, or installing a physical barrier.
By taking preventative measures and being proactive in deterring pigeons, you can protect your garden and maintain a peaceful coexistence with these feathered neighbors.