Birds are a problem for many homeowners. They can ruin your roof, eaves, and siding by making nests in these areas of your home. Birds will reuse the same spot to make more than one nest over the course of several years. Some birds will even tear off shingles or siding to get into an area where they want to build a nest. If not managed properly, birds can cause expensive damage to your home.
You must remove the bird’s access to its nest so it will leave on its own accord. It is important to try and get rid of the bird while it still has chicks in the nest so they don’t die. Removing or blocking off an active nest within 48 hours is critical for these animals.
What Tools do I need?
Nest blocking tools are available at your local garden center, hardware store or online. These devices help keep the birds from being able to access their nests so they will not return. Here’s what you’ll need:
- Stepladder or ladder
- Drill and 3/16-inch drill bit
- Screws (long enough for 1-inch penetration into roof sheathing)
- One nest blocking device per active nest in your house (You can buy one to block off all nests if you do not know how many there are, but it is best to protect each location as needed.)
How do I Take Care of the Problem?
Take care of the problem before your roof restoration project. Always wear safety gear when working on your roof and with tools in general. Safety must be a priority for this task. Also, protect yourself from heat exhaustion by wearing sunscreen and drinking plenty of water while you’re outdoors during the hot summer months. Wear shoes with good traction to prevent slipping off your roof or ladder and always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for using equipment such as ladders, scaffolding, or lifts.
Step 1: Find out if there is an active nest on top of your house by looking around the upper-most areas where birds would build a nest (usually a ruffed ledge or a flat surface about 3 feet wide). Check under your, gutters, ridge vents, or attic areas. If you find a nest, it will contain eggs or chicks and look like a big fluffy haystack.
Step 2: Place the nest blocking device over the roof sheathing directly on top of the active nest (if there is no roof sheathing below it place it directly on top of the drywall). Use screws that penetrate into the roof sheathing by at least one inch to secure the device in place.
Step 3: Leave this blocking device up for 48 hours before removing it so the parent birds will not be able to return and remove their young from danger. After 48 hours have passed, use your stepladder or ladder and carefully remove the bird blocking device and seal all openings where birds may enter with galvanized hardware cloth (approximately 1/2-inch mesh) in the areas where the blocking device was removed.
Step 4: Find all nests with young or eggs and promptly remove them, making sure no animals are inside by looking through it before you touch it. Crush the eggs if there are any. If you’re not sure how to dispose of unhatched eggs or decomposing bodies, contact your local animal control agency for advice on proper disposal methods.
Step 5: Place new nest blocking devices over active nests within 48 hours so parents will not be able to return for their young birds and will move them elsewhere. Continue until all nests have been removed from your home’s roof or eaves.
Tips & Warnings:
- When looking for nests on your roof, also check other high spots such as trees that are close to your home where birds may be building their nests.
- Remember, if you cannot or do not wish to remove the nest blocking device within 48 hours of finding it over an active nest, leave it up and proceed with proper removal techniques after 48 hours have passed.
- Wear thick leather gloves when removing eggs or chicks-in-progress from the nest blocking devices (you might even want to wear goggles). Use firm but gentle tugs; too rough can cause damage to the eggshells. If you accidentally crush any eggs while removing them, clean up the broken eggshells because they will attract insects like ants.
- To prevent birds from nesting in your roof in the future, take precautions in the months when they could possibly want to build nests. Use plastic mesh netting over any areas where you do not want them to build their nests (such as flat roofs). Other options include anti-roosting spikes or sprinkling chili powder along eaves to keep birds away. You can also use fake owls or hawks, but make sure these props are well-maintained and looking like they’re alive (glue on broken feathers, rearrange the “skin” every few days if necessary). Don’t forget to change out prop owls with live ones for Halloween!
By following these steps for prevention, you can avoid the headache of birds nesting in your home.
For more information on how to prevent birds from nesting in your home or if you have an active bird’s nest, don’t hesitate to get in touch with Fox Roofing and Construction at (503) 660-6225, serving in Gresham, all Portland Metropolitan area, SW Washington, and all surrounding cities.
Fox Roofing and Construction
21891 SE Ash St,
Gresham, OR 97030, US