Pigeons might be one of the most ubiquitous birds in the world. They are found in almost every city, town, and village. Even though many people consider them a nuisance, some homeowners are curious about why pigeons choose their houses to roost.
Well, they come to houses in search of shelter and food. These birds are attracted to areas where they can find a comfortable place to rest and a source of sustenance.
Here, I will explore why pigeons are attracted to houses and what you can do to discourage them from making your property their home.
Some of The Reasons Why Pigeons are Attracted to Houses
Pigeons can be considered pests due to their droppings and potential property damage. They are also a part of urban wildlife. They are often attracted to houses for various reasons, some of which include:
Pigeons are opportunistic feeders and are attracted to places where they can find food quickly. Houses often provide food sources such as crumbs, leftover pet food, bird feeders, and even open trash cans.
Pigeons seek shelter from harsh weather conditions, predators, and other threats. With their nooks, eaves, and ledges, houses offer ideal roosting spots and protection from the elements.
Pigeons are known to build nests in the eaves, chimneys, and other recessed areas of houses. They are attracted to these locations as they provide a secure and elevated spot for nesting and raising their young.
Pigeons may be attracted to the warmth emitted by houses, especially during colder seasons. They may seek out vents or openings where warm air escapes to keep warm.
Pigeons need access to water for drinking and bathing. Houses often have gutters, downspouts, or other fixtures that collect rainwater, which can serve as a convenient water source for pigeons.
Lack of predators
Urban and suburban areas tend to have fewer natural predators for pigeons than rural areas. Houses and buildings provide shelter from potential threats like hawks and owls.
Pigeons can become habituated to human presence and may associate houses with a steady source of food, water, and shelter. Once they establish this association, they are more likely to return to the same location repeatedly.
Pigeons are social birds and often congregate in large numbers. When one pigeon finds a suitable location around a house, others may follow, forming a pigeon community near the house.
Houses and buildings with ledges, awnings, and flat surfaces offer easily accessible perches for pigeons to rest and observe their surroundings.
Pigeons are known to be active during daylight hours. Still, artificial lighting around houses can sometimes attract them, especially at night when they may be searching for food or shelter.
Is It Unhealthy to Have Pigeons Around Your House?
Having pigeons around your house can have positive and negative aspects, and whether it is considered unhealthy depends on various factors and the extent of the pigeon’s presence. Here are some potential health concerns associated with pigeons around your house:
- Disease Transmission: Pigeons can carry diseases, including avian influenza, salmonella, and histoplasmosis, which can be transmitted to humans through contact with their droppings, feathers, or nesting materials. These diseases can pose health risks, significantly if you have compromised immunity or underlying health conditions.
- Property Damage: Pigeons can cause damage to your property by nesting in or on buildings, roofs, and gutters. Their droppings can be corrosive and cause structural damage over time. Pigeon nests and droppings may also block drainage systems, leading to water damage.
- Hygiene Concerns: Pigeon droppings can accumulate on surfaces, making them unsightly and potentially unhygienic. The accumulation of droppings can create foul odors and attract other pests, such as flies.
- Noise and Nuisance: Pigeons can be noisy, especially during their mating and nesting seasons. Their cooing and flapping of wings may disrupt your peace and comfort.
- Aesthetic Value: Some people enjoy having pigeons around for their aesthetic value. They can be considered beautiful birds and may contribute to the local wildlife ambiance.
- Ecosystem Role: Pigeons are part of the urban ecosystem and serve prey for predators like hawks and owls, helping maintain ecological balance.
How Can You Make Your Homes Less Attractive to Pigeons?
Making your home less attractive to pigeons involves taking proactive measures to discourage them from roosting, nesting, and congregating on your property. Here are some effective ways to achieve this:
Remove Food Sources
- Ensure that outdoor pet food is not left out for extended periods.
- Avoid overfilling bird feeders, and use feeders designed to minimize spillage.
- Store trash in secure containers with tightly fitting lids.
- Remove fallen fruits or food scraps from your yard.
- Clean up bird droppings promptly using proper safety precautions (wearing gloves and a mask).
Seal Entry Points
- Identify and seal any openings or gaps in your house where pigeons might enter to build nests. Pay attention to vents, eaves, chimneys, and roof spaces.
- Install screens or mesh over attic vents and openings.
- Install physical deterrents like bird spikes, netting, or shock strips on ledges, window sills, and other roosting sites.
- Consider using motion-activated devices that emit sounds or sprays of water when pigeons approach.
- Use visual deterrents like reflective tape, scarecrows, or balloons with predatory eye designs to intimidate pigeons.
- Occasionally, these deterrents prevent pigeons from becoming accustomed to them.
Modify Roosting Areas
Make roosting sites uncomfortable by adding sloped surfaces or materials like spikes or mesh that pigeons cannot comfortably perch on.
Install Sloped Roofs and Ledges
Pigeons prefer flat surfaces for roosting. Modify roof edges and ledges to create slopes that discourage perching.
Trim trees and bushes near your house to eliminate potential perching and nesting spots.
Use Visual Barriers
Block pigeons’ line of sight to preferred roosting spots with physical barriers like screens or vegetation.
Consider using ultrasonic bird-repellent devices that emit unpleasant high-frequency sounds for pigeons.
Maintain Gutters and Drains
Keep gutters and drains clear of debris to prevent water from pooling, which can attract pigeons looking for water sources.
If you have a severe pigeon problem, consult pest control or wildlife removal experts who can assess the situation and recommend appropriate solutions.
What Should I Do If a Pigeon Bites Me? How to Prevent Pigeons from Biting?
If a pigeon bites you, it’s important to clean the wound thoroughly with soap and water. Apply an antiseptic and bandage the area. To prevent pigeon bites, avoid feeding them and keep your distance. Pigeon-proof your space by sealing off entry points and removing potential nesting sites. Follow these pigeon biting prevention tips to reduce the risk of bites and potential infections.
Why Do Pigeons Coo Constantly When They Come to Houses?
Many people wonder about pigeon cooing behavior explained. Pigeons coo constantly when they come to houses because it is their way of communicating with other pigeons. They use cooing sounds to establish territory, attract mates, and signal any potential danger. It is a natural instinct for them and a means of survival in their social dynamics.
Overall, it’s clear that pigeons visiting our houses can be more than just a nuisance. These birds can carry diseases, cause property damage, and disrupt our outdoor activities.
However, there are ways to prevent pigeons from coming to our houses, such as using bird spikes, netting, and repellents.