The pigeon is the number one urban pest bird in the United States. Large numbers exist in Albuquerque, and they are responsible for hundreds of thousands of dollars each year. The uric acid in their feces is highly corrosive, and all the debris from roosting flocks can build up, backing up gutters and drains thus causing damage to roofs and other structures. Extensive damage to air conditioning units and other roof top machinery is very common. Pigeon droppings can deface the sides of buildings, projecting an unclean, dirty company image. Besides physical damage, the bacteria, fungal agents and ectoparasites found in pigeon droppings sometimes represent a health risk.
The management of pigeon populations is often a complex challenge requiring an integrated program of bird control. Effective programs typically combine exclusion techniques with reproductive control or chemical repellants.
Pigeons can be excluded from buildings by blocking access to indoor roosts and nesting areas. Openings to lofts, steeples, vents, and eaves should be blocked with wood, metal, glass, masonry, rust-proofed wire mesh, or plastic or nylon netting. Roosting on ledges can be discouraged by either changing the angle to 45 degrees or more, or installing a net, bird wire, or bird spikes.
When dealing with pigeons, it is important to eliminate as many feeding, watering, roosting, and nesting sites as possible. Discourage people from feeding pigeons in public areas and clean up garbage or waste in parking lots and dumpsters. Eliminate pools of standing water that pigeons use for watering. Modify structures, buildings, and architectural designs to make them less attractive to pigeons.
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