Pigeons in the attic or on the roof? Those pesky rock doves leaving droppings all over are common pigeons. Pigeons are notorious for causing significant damage to buildings, vehicles, property and machinery with their excessive droppings. Not only do pigeon droppings cause odor and aesthetic problems in public places, droppings can also increase the rate of building destruction. Description Common in both cities and suburban communities, pigeons roost on window ledges, rooftops, and bridges, which are perfect substitutes for the natural cliff ledges the birds typically use as nesting sites and shelter. Pigeons are indiscriminant feeders and eat any available food source, from grains and seeds to human waste and handouts. Feeding the pests actually raises pigeon populations to larger than sustainable numbers. Appearance Growing as long as 11 inches and weighing about 12 to 13 ounces, pigeons have gray bodies with dark blue heads, necks, and chests. A combination of yellow, green, and purple iridescence can be found along the neck and wings. Most pigeons have two dark bands across their wings and another band across their tail. Bills are typically black and have off-white areas of protective skin above the nostrils. Habitat Pigeons make up one of the largest species of feral birds in the world. Wild pigeons can be found nesting along seaside cliffs, though they also build their nests either near or on barns, homes, and other buildings in both urban and rural areas. Pigeon nests are comprised of sticks and grasses clumped together and may be found in building lofts, church steeples, and home attics. Entry Are pigeons known to enter homes or yards? Opportunistic feeders, pigeons often target human habitations and other manmade structures to roost, nest, and look for easy access to food sources. Farms with grain silos, homes with open garbage containers, and large parks all attract the birds with the promise of an easy meal. Neighborhoods and communities must often work together to deal with infestations of pigeons, as large flocks tend to settle an area all at once. Damage Do pigeons harm people or property? Pigeon droppings can cause a variety of issues for buildings and people. In addition to being unsightly, the excrement corrodes buildings and kills vegetation when it accumulates in high enough volumes. Additionally, accumulated droppings can contribute to the spread of histoplasmosis, which is extremely dangerous to the human respiratory tract. Pigeons also carry various parasites including mites, fleas, and ticks. Stored grains may become contaminated from the presence of pigeons. Large flocks sometimes cause collisions with aircrafts, as well. Control and Safety Exclusion methods and the elimination of food sources are the best ways to abolish large populations of pigeons. Blocking and sealing openings to roosting sites, fixing broken screens, and using mechanical repellents, such as spikes and porcupine wire, may discourage pigeons from landing on buildings. Refraining from feeding the birds and removing access to other food sources, such as garbage cans, also helps keep pigeon numbers down. Trapping and Removal Certain methods, such as scare tactics, are usually ineffective at removing pigeons as the birds are accustomed to human interaction. As feral birds, pigeons are not protected by any federal or state laws, though local ordinances may exist; it is still best to call Critter Control to deal with the wild animals. Our wildlife specialists know how to perform humane pigeon removal that keeps populations at normal levels. We can help you get rid of pigeon problems. Call today: 1.800.274.8837.