How to keep birds away from your yard (simple & unharmful tips)
Bird-watching is a fun hobby to have.
What happens when the birds aren’t fun anymore?
Specifically, when the birds do more than just eat insects in your yard. And upgrade to eating vegetables in your yard.
Perhaps you’ve got so many avian visitors that your patio is always covered in bird poop.
In short, birds can also be an unbearable pain in the back. And most times, you don’t want all of them gone, or maybe just the bullies.
Either way, you want to nip this problem in the bud before it gets worse.
In this guide, I’ll share simple tips you can use to get rids of birds. Don’t fret, none of the tips are harmful to the birds.
What Attracts Birds to Your Yard?
Knowing what attracts birds to your yard is the first step to controlling and getting rid of them. Some of these attractions include:
- Food Spots: Bird feeders are harmless when they aren’t attracting unwanted birds. Other sources such as insects, earthworms, rotten fruits, seeds, and vegetables of all kinds would attract pest birds. Having a garden is also a sure way to attract birds.
- Water Sources: Living near the coast, birds like seagulls will come lurking in search of fishes and fruits. A water source in your yard or garden would also attract small and large birds seeking to quench their thirst.
- Nesting Places: Trees and bushes are an attractive roosting place for birds. Having a tree in your yard or leaving your bushes unpruned, birds will flock to your yard.
Removing some of these attraction spots is straightforward. However, some, like a large body of water cannot be moved, and neither would you want to burn down your garden.
Thus, you need ways to get rids of these birds.
Tips to Keep Birds Away
If you’re dealing with a pesky bird colony, do not lose hope. There is no magical way to make birds blind to your yard. You will need to plan and devise strategies for a bird-free yard.
Below are tips to keep birds away from your yard.
Food, water, and shelter are the basic survival needs of birds. If you remove these things from your yard, they’ll leave lest they die. Modifying your yard is a long-term practice for ridding your properties of birds.
Like most animals, birds need a freshwater source to survive. If you have a water feature in your yard such as a fountain, replace the freshwater with saltwater. They won’t be able to drink it and would look for other sources.
Birds are attracted to pet food. Storing food in an airtight container would keep birds away. If you feed your pets outside, be on the lookout. Pack their food dish and wash it as soon as they’re done eating. It’s also important to dispose of garbage regularly so that birds do not make your bin their food spot.
Birds like to roost in cool and dry places especially during rainy or windy days. Keep trees pruned and grass mowed. This will reduce the available cover to them. Get rid of bird nests you find in your yard. Many birds will try to rebuild several times but eventually, they’ll perceive the place as unsafe and seek safe refuge elsewhere.
Bird deterrent is anything that prevents, discourages, or inhibits birds from coming into your yard or garden.
Deterrents can be classified into two categories – Auditory and Visual.
The hearing range of most birds is between 1,000 – 4,000 Hz. Some birds can pick up even higher frequencies. Ultrasonic bird repellents are sound deterrent devices that emit high-frequency sounds to scare birds away.
These devices such as an electronic animal repeller are motion-activated and emit loud noises to keep them out of your yard. Most of these devices are beyond the human hearing range, so you shouldn’t have to worry about it affecting you.
Decoys are a good way to scare birds from your yard. They can take the form of predatory animals or birds. The decoy can also be in a human form known as a scarecrow.
Birds are smart enough to know what predators look like but not enough to differentiate between real and fake.
Decoys, however, aren’t a long-term solution as it would work only for a limited time. You can improve the effectiveness by switching them every few days and pairing with other bird ridding methods.
Bird netting is a useful way to prevent birds from destroying your garden. Bird nets can be made with nylon or plastic mesh. Create a wood or metal framework around your garden, then drape the bird net over it.
You should ensure the mesh is small enough to keep out even the smallest of birds. Bird netting is not a useful barrier if you have tall trees and plants in your yard.
Bird Spikes are great repellents to prevent birds from perching on fences, tree branches, and overhead beams in your yard. They are made from plastic or stainless steel.
The spikes are ultra-thin, so they don’t hurt birds but it sure would make the landing on the surface uncomfortable.
While this is an excellent long term solution, it won’t work on smaller birds like hummingbirds and sparrows.
Electric strips work like bird spikes but use electricity rather than spikes to deter birds. When birds land on the strip, it sends a small jolt of electricity into their body. It’s not enough to hurt them but it sure would send them flying away.
This is a better option aesthetically if you’re worried about how spikes would look around your house.
Birds becoming pests is frustrating and comes with collateral damage in your yard. You should prevent this before it even happens.
Taking away the things that attract birds is the best prevention method. If that doesn’t work, a combination of the deterrent methods would ensure birds are unlikely to return.
Garrett Hayes is the head bird watcher and editor in chief over at BirdingHub.com. His love of birds is unmatched, though his love of coffee comes in at a close second!