Birds are cute beings, but when they start becoming invasive, the fun turns into a nightmare of bird proofing. Many countries and cities across the world had faced the dilemma of getting rid of pesky birds on their public areas. The main reason is that the once adorable fowls overproduced and now causing nuisance in the public places. All nations had probably crossed on the same problem once and utilized the likes of bird proofing spikes to discourage the flyers from staying.
Since I have mentioned, bird spikes have been a thing for a long time now. It’s a go-to option for homeowners who want to stop birds from invading their properties without killing or harming them. Also, bird spikes are economical and can last for years. Some manufacturers even offer long warranty coverage of as much as one decade.
Although I acknowledge that bird spikes aren’t for all, it’s still a quick and guaranteed way to stop the fowls from paying you a visit. In fact, these countries would likely benefit from it too as they face the pesky bird problem.
1. Puerto Rico
If you’re not from the U.S. and you’ve heard about the country Puerto Rico, there’s about 80% chance of you thinking of the song “Despacito”. Aside from the hurricane that battered this nation last year, they have another problem to address: feral birds, especially the pin-tailed whydah.
This beautiful bird is easy to recognize during the mating season. They grow a black plume of feather twice as long as their bodies to attract a potential mate. Once they reproduce and lay their eggs, they will become notorious for brood parasitism. This is when the whydah tricks other birds to take care of its own young. The result is that the host bird would be neglecting its own species and instead, they feed and tend the young whydahs.
Although they don’t necessarily cause property damage, these whydahs can disrupt the local birds Puerto Ricans are nurturing. Installing some bird proofing spikes on their fences and near nesting poles would help as long as it doesn’t interfere with the other birds.
2. Venice, Italy
Venice, Italy is a fine, romantic place. The postcard photos of the pigeons in the park are famous and somehow a landmark image. But it’s been almost a decade now when the government banned the tourists and anyone from feeding the birds. The reason? The Venetian government is losing at least $380 a year for the cleaning of the pigeons’ droppings.
This is a move the Venice government made to cut the reproduction of the pesky pigeons in the area. Anyone who will be seen feeding the birds will be fined with a whopping $800. Surrounding shops, establishments, and residential areas are suffering due to the large population of the feral birds. It’s also crucial for the government to keep the sanitation of their public places due to the growing tourism in the area. Venice accepts an estimated 20 million visitors per year.
For sure, many locals have utilized means of fending off the fowls from their properties. Bird proofing spikes, for one, are the easiest tools to stop the pigeons from perching, roosting, and nesting.
3. Kentucky, United States
About five years ago, the Kentucky city has experienced a literal feral bird nightmare, with some attributing it to the horror film “The Birds” by Alfred Hitchcock. A large group of starlings and blackbirds cast on the skies of the state that caused alarm in the locality. And not just that, these birds also left hefty amounts of poop carrying diseases enough to kill dogs and send humans to hospitals.
The invasion continued and the state still experiences blackbird attacks including the birds swooping down and pecking directly on humans. A local even got his ears ripped and his son’s eyeball injured and had to be removed. Trees turn white after being covered with the gross excrement of the fowls. The government blamed the phenomenon to global warming as the birds were forced to migrate further to the south where they aren’t supposed to be going.
During this season, many locals are leaving the state and moving temporarily to Louisiana or the nearby Mississippi. In this condition, bird proofing spikes will help to stop birds from roosting on trees and houses.
Who would have thought parakeets can be invasive? Mexico had faced a fast invasion of parakeets after Europe imposed a ban on bird imports as part of efforts to stop the spread of avian flu. The consequence is the parakeets being categorized as an invasive species in 2016. Some owners had released or had their birds escaped in captivity which resulted in the escalating population of the fowls.
The fecal matter, as well as the fear of the spread of diseases, is the number one concern of Mexicans. Installation of bird spikes would help together with a more proactive approach in the species management plan of the government.
Locals describe it as “a very unusual invasion”. The reason is that it’s the collateral damage of complying with international pet trades ban. To add on the parakeet problem is the earlier importation of foreign species that will turn out to be invasive in the years to come. One example is the monk parakeets imported from Uruguay. The outcome is already pestering the locals.
5. Madrid, Spain
Quaker parrots are one of the most intelligent birds you can find. They are chatty and colorful but make their population huge and they will wreak havoc on the place. You might need to buy bird proofing spikes in no time. This is exactly what’s happening in Madrid as the squawking and pooping of these parrots are irritating the residents and causing the nuisance. They also build massive nests that leave debris and cause tree branches to tear off and electrical wirings compromised.
What locals loathe about these birds is they pee on cars and leave smelly poop. Places like Casa de Campo and Retiro are just some of the favorite places of non-local birds that originally came from Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, and other countries.
According to local researches, there are about 20,000 parrots roaming the space in Spain. And as their population becomes bigger, locals are finding ways to drive them away and stop them from leaving droppings. Authorities were performing culling and nest removal since 2016 to halt the invasion of the species. But the fight continuous since many parrots just transfer to another place to reproduce.
6. Parque de la Paloma, Malaga, Spain
The Parque de la Paloma in Malaga, Spain is known for being the biggest “green lung” at the Costa del Sol. But the serene and fresh-aired place started to be pestered with feral cockerels and hens. These birds start to flock in large numbers that the poop they leave becomes a burden for the locals. Bird proofing spikes are also being installed. The local government doesn’t have a problem with birds perching on the park, but the case in the Malaga, Spain is a bit out of ordinary.
The visitors of the park already find it hard to walk easily on the pathways as the birds that land on it. About 400 cockerels pester the park and are starting to find their way to the nearby residential area. People here would surely benefit from the installation of bird spikes even before the actual home invasion happens.
The local officials blamed the sudden rise of the bird population to people leaving their animals in the park. As a response to the invading population, the authorities start taking the hens to local farm schools.
7. Rome, Italy
Just like Venice, Rome, Italy is facing the pigeon dilemma on its sacred grounds. Not just that, thousands of gulls are also stealing the scene by pecking and stealing food from bystanders as well as attacking the doves. They feed on pigeons and in one instance, the dove released by a child beside Pope Francis was attacked by a gull mid-air seconds after its flight. The dove survived, losing some tail feathers along the way.
During the autumn season, flocks of starlings add to the problem. At dusk, they cast a dark swirl in the sky of Rome, not to mention the fecal matter the birds leave. Business and establishments are bearing the brunt of these migratory birds and they start putting bird proofing spikes as a defense. As you know, Rome is a host to many rooftop restaurants bared in open-air and complete with white table sheets.
The annoying gulls keep on perching on the balconies of buildings within touching distance. Some would start devouring on the plate as soon as the guests leave while others are bold enough to invade during the meal. This is the reason why bird spikes became a valuable tool to stop these birds to even perch near the visitors.
8. London, Great Britain
London is known for its flock of birds, especially those in the Kensington Place. Some aren’t aggressive but there are some that will peck a pigeon to death when it wishes so. This part of London became a tourist attraction for those who want birds that will land on their hands. Parakeets aren’t local to London. The abundance of food and their ability to adapt to a colder climate made them successful in migrating.
But the growing population of this parrots starts to become a threat to local songbirds. Parakeets are aggressive when it comes to food. A bird feeder can be left empty in a few minutes which caused some species to stay away from parks and other public places. They may perch somewhere else, probably a residential area’s fence or balcony. This is where bird proofing spikes are much needed.
The locals stress that although the parrots are causing a minor disturbance on local species and open-air establishments, it doesn’t have a massively detrimental effect on the ecology of London. What is more alarming are the starlings that can kill trees by continuously dumping their droppings on it.
Of all the birds that may come in town, cuckoos are the most invasive. They disrupt the local birds’ natural course of living as a brood parasite. The cuckoos will lay eggs and fool the local birds to attend to it by sneaking the eggs when the local fowls aren’t around their nests. Although some species had known the ways of cuckoos, some failed to evolve and end up having their own young killed in the nest when the new cuckoo hatches.
Among the most affected bird species are buntings, warblers, and wagtails. Some of these birds are defenseless against cuckoos that their own kind fails to propagate during the breeding season. The authorities have been trying to keep cuckoos in the Eurasia region but the population is now starting to land in Alaska, something that is troublesome for the locals.
There’s not much-recorded damage from cuckoos on establishments, but they still have the ability to leave smelly droppings that the locals have to clean up. To prevent this from happening, bird proofing spikes better be installed.
10. Perth, Australia
The quiet place of Perth is now being invaded with noisy corellas, a type of cockatoo known for being a notorious nuisance on parks and other public places. There have been corellas in Perth in the past decades but in controlled numbers. A few years after, the 1,000 corellas in Perth ballooned to 10,000. The local authorities even had to conduct culling of some of the invasive birds to control their population.
These corellas don’t just squawk noisily, they also damage crops, gardens, power lines, and light fittings. The least a household can do is to install bird spikes and other deterrent apparatus.
Of course, using bird proofing spikes isn’t the solid answer to stopping these birds from invading countries across the world. Still, it’s a good start and many private properties will benefit by simply discouraging the fowls from landing on their roofs or balconies. What do you think of this list? Let us know below!