When Is Bird Nest Removal OK?

When Is Bird Nest Removal OK?

Birds have been known to build their nests in the most inconvenient places around your home – above doors, over your garage, inside your shed, on top of your lawnmower, in heat pumps, and any number of other high traffic or hazardous areas. Although birds don’t typically pose a serious threat to humans, they can cause damage to your roof, car, and property. Their nests can block stove, dryer, and fan vents causing fire hazards and rendering them useless. Their nests can also clog gutters and drains, leading to standing water and potential damage to your roof. Their droppings contain uric acid which can damage the paint on your car. Bird droppings also contain pathogens that are dangerous to humans like histoplasmosis. Bird nests can also contain other pests such as mites, parasites, and ticks that can stick around long after the birds have left the nest.

Your first reaction when encountering a nuisance bird may be to just remove the nest. However, there are Federal laws regarding bird nest removal that make it illegal to remove certain species of birds or their nests. Best practice is always to check with a wildlife control company before attempting to remove any bird nests from your home.

Here are some steps to take to ensure both proper and safe bird nest removal and/or relocation.

1. Prevent Them

The best way to eliminate bird nests from your property is to prevent them from building in the first place. Remove any food scraps and open trash from around your home as this invites them to feed. Make sure trash is secured tightly in containers. Place any bird feeders and birdbaths away from the home and further out in the yard. Only put out enough food for a few birds and clean up any spills regularly. Consider installing gutter guards to prevent nesting in gutters and downspouts. Vents are a common nesting place for birds so install vent covers and screens. Use perch repellents if necessary; these are rows of bird spikes installed on ledges, window sills, and around the perimeter of the roof to prevent birds from alighting on perches. You can also use visual repellents such as plastic owls, hawks, snakes, and even coyotes. If you use visual repellents, make sure to move them often as the birds will get used to them being in one place. Hang reflective bird diverters from strings on your porch also.

The best time to remove a nest is when it is still in the building stage. If you notice a bird nest already built or remove one this season, keep an eye out in the same area next season and stop it before it is fully completed.

2. Check for Activity

Always make sure a nest is inactive before removing or relocating it. Never attempt to remove or relocate a nest if there are birds or eggs present. It is best to wait until after nesting season for any removal or relocation. Eggs in a nest without signs of the parents don’t necessarily mean the nest has been abandoned. The parents may be out feeding or they may have left to allow the eggs a chance to cool down.

3. Wait For the End of Nesting Season

The best time to remove or relocate a nest is after nesting season is over. Most birds only nest once per year; however, some species will nest 4 to 5 times. The time varies with the species of bird. Without knowing the specific species of bird, it is difficult to determine the best time to remove or relocate the nest. A professional wildlife exclusion expert can help identify the species you are dealing with and help determine the best time to remove the nest.

4. Use Proper Precautions

Once you have positively identified the species of bird you have, confirmed it is legal to remove the nest, and have made sure the nest is inactive and no eggs are present, you can proceed with removing or relocating the nest. Bird nests can harbor other pests and residual bird droppings that can contain dangerous pathogens for humans. Make sure to wear long sleeves, long pants, latex gloves, and a respiratory mask to protect yourself. Carefully inspect the nest to make sure it is empty of eggs and birds. Spray the nest with an antibacterial spray. Once dry, remove the nest and dispose of it in a securely sealed container or exterior trash bag. Dispose of it in the trash away from the home. Clean the area where the nest was with a strong disinfectant. Remove and dispose of your gloves. Remove your clothing and wash them immediately in hot water. Wash your hands thoroughly.

5. Call A Professional

It can be difficult to determine whether or not the bird nest in or on your home is legal to remove or the best way to remove it. If you have a bird nest that is causing problems in or on your property, contact a professional wildlife exclusion company who can positively identify the species of bird you have, properly remove or dispose of the nest, and help you identify areas where nesting could be a potential issue in the future.

 

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Wildlife Creatures to Lookout for this Winter

Wildlife Creatures to Lookout for this Winter

Food, water, and a warm place to live are three things wildlife creatures are in search of this winter season. For them, our house can give them direct access to these needs, where they often find their way into our chimneys, attic, basements, and crawlspaces. It’s important to know what pests to look out for and what preventative measures to take, to help prevent a wildlife infestation.

Rats 

Seeing a rat inside is always alarming. These rodents are known to live in crawlspaces and between the side beams of walls, often accessing inside through the smallest hole and gap. Once inside, rats will chew on electrical wire, causing property damage and an increased risk of fires. Their droppings are also a risk, as they contain pathogens dangerous to humans.

Raccoons

Nocturnal omnivores, raccoons are dexterous and can use their paws to open lids and doors. These animals will use their hands to dig for food, especially in garbage cans. A creature of habit, once raccoons discover food sources in a particular area, such as your house, they will keep coming back over and over, causing both a risk of an infestation and damaged property.

Squirrels

Squirrels are one of the most common wildlife creatures homeowners see. While they are cute from afar, if found inside your home, they can cause considerable damage. Squirrels will take refuge in basements and attics, often bringing acorns to store for the wintertime. Like rats, these rodents will also chew on electrical wire, creating a risk of a fire. Both squirrels themselves and their droppings can contain diseases and pathogens.

To avoid a winter wildlife invasion, prevention is key. Here are a few wildlife prevention tips to help with wildlife control:

  • Seal garbage cans and compost bins at night.
  • Bring pet food and water bowls indoors at night.
  • Trim tree limbs and shrubs away from your house.
  • Place a grated screen on top of your chimney.
  • Consider enclosing your crawlspace to eliminate entry points.
  • Examine your home exterior for any holes and gaps. If holes or gaps are found, seal them immediately.
How to Carefully Deter Squirrels

How to Carefully Deter Squirrels

While many of us deem squirrels as cute and cuddly, the moment they start to invade our homes, we soon lose that fondness for wanting them around. As the weather begins to cool down, these pests will look towards houses, specifically attics, to create a nest and keep warm. Once inside, squirrels can cause major damage, such as chewing on electrical wires, destroying insulation, and leaving behind their droppings and urine. Luckily, there are a few ways to deter these creatures from your house. Check out these squirrel control tips you can use at home.

Trees and limbs can give squirrels easy access to your roofline. To prevent squirrels from gaining access, make sure that your tree limbs are cut back and trimmed away from the roofline. By cutting these access points, it’s an easy way to keep them away from your attic, chimneys, and any open holes or gaps leading inside the house.

Cleaning up around your home can also help to prevent these squirrels from entering your property. Squirrels are omnivores, meaning they will eat both meat and plants, including fruits, nuts, and small insects. To prevent them from scavenging for food around your house, make sure to dispose of garbage regularly while always using a sealed container. If you have any fruit trees on your property, try to look out for any ripe fruit and dispose of or pick them promptly.

Getting rid of squirrels can be difficult, and it can often take a trained professional who has the expertise to help prevent and eliminate them. If utilizing preventative measures fails and squirrels have invaded your property, consider reaching out to your local wildlife control company where they can provide you with the most effective trapping and removal methods for these rodents.

When Does Snake Season End?

When Does Snake Season End?

As the weather cools off and fall peeks around the corner, many people are taking advantage of the milder weather and spending more time outside. Unfortunately, many pests and wildlife, including snakes, are also enjoying the milder weather, preparing for the impending winter. Although most snakes encountered in Georgia are nonvenomous, there are a few species of venomous snakes to keep an eye out for. These include the copperhead, the timber rattlesnake, the cottonmouth, the eastern diamondback rattlesnake, the eastern coral snake, and the pigmy rattlesnake.

When spending time outdoors, keep an eye out for snakes in backyards, parks, and areas near the woods. They also like to frequent areas that border streams, lakes, swamps, and ponds. Snake season begins in the spring, usually March to April. Snake season doesn’t end until late fall or even winter, depending on weather patterns and where you’re located. Snakes in the southern states will stay active much longer than up north where the cold sets in sooner.

If you run into a snake, keep these tips in mind:

  1. Familiarize yourself with the venomous snake species common in your area and how to recognize them.
  2. Try to identify the snake without getting too close to it.
  3. Give the snake space.
  4. If spending time outdoors, wear closed-toed shoes and long pants.
  5. Remove any brush, log piles and other attractants for rodents from around your home.
  6. Seal up any cracks, gaps, and holes that snakes can use to get into.
  7. Remember that non-venomous snakes are protected by law in Georgia.

Because snake season hasn’t quite ended yet, it’s still important to take precautions when spending time outdoors. It’s best to leave snake removal to the professionals, especially if you aren’t sure what type of snake you’re dealing with. If you have a problem with snakes or any other pests, contact your local pest control company for proper identification and safe elimination of the offending creature.

 

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Preparing for Fall Wildlife

Preparing for Fall Wildlife

Fall is just around the corner! While we are all eager for that brisk fall breeze to arrive, we know that as the temperatures get cooler, certain wildlife creatures will be more active during the fall season. Wildlife such as squirrels, mice, opossums, and rats are just a few that will start to look indoors for a warm habitat and food source. Before the fall season arrives, every homeowner should start wildlife control preparations early to help prevent these animal intruders from getting inside.

Wildlife animals are constantly in search of food and water to survive. Animals such as opossums and rats often look to garbage cans to find food, making a huge mess in the process. To keep them from scavenging through your trash cans, make sure your garbage isn’t overflowing. Keep your exterior garbage cans secure by locking and sealing the lids overnight.

Raccoons, squirrels, and birds will easily sneak into open gaps or holes leading right into your home. Screen attic vents and openings in chimneys can provide them with ideal openings. Ensure that the vents and chimneys are fully screened and sealed off. Likewise, check around the exterior of your home for any gaps or holes leading inside. Rats and mice only need a small opening to get inside, so ensuring that you’ve sealed any openings can help eliminate the chance of infestation.

Your yard is the first thing that wildlife creatures will enter. Keeping your yard well-maintained can help to prevent these pests from inhabiting. Make sure to clean up leaf piles, brush, and debris throughout the yard. When cleaning up the piles, put them in sealed waste bags and store them in the garage until garbage day. Trim your tree limbs or branches away from your roofline as animals, such as squirrels, will use them as a guide to enter inside the home.

Preventing wildlife from entering your property can be difficult but possible. If you’ve noticed more wildlife creatures than usual, consider calling your professional wildlife control company. These wildlife exclusion experts will inspect your home, identify entry points, safely remove infested animals, and prevent them from entering in the future!

Fact or Fiction: Mothballs Keep Snakes Away

Fact or Fiction: Mothballs Keep Snakes Away

Although many people don’t welcome the sight of a snake in their yard, they are actually quite beneficial to have around. Snakes eat mice, grubs, slugs, and other insects around your home and are also a source of food for birds of prey like hawks. While most species of snakes are non-venomous, there are a few types of snakes that are venomous in our area. For this reason, you should never handle a snake unless you are 100% sure you know what species it is. Most snakes will bite when harassed whether they are venomous or not.

There are many natural snake repellent methods out there today with one of the most common being mothballs. But are they really effective? According to experts at the Blue Ridge Poison Center the answer is a resounding NO. Mothballs are made of either naphthalene or paradicholorbenzene. Both of these chemicals are hazardous to both humans and animals if exposed to or ingested. The chemical makeup of each of these substances allow them to turn into gas when they are exposed to the air – resulting in the strong smell we usually associate with mothballs. These fumes can cause dizziness and irritation to the eyes and the lungs. If ingested, mothballs can cause a condition called hemolytic anemia which is very dangerous. Mothballs also resemble candy to young children, making them more likely to pick them up and handle or eat them.

So if mothballs aren’t the answer, how can you get rid of snakes? Here are a few snake prevention tips you can use safely around your home.

  • Make your home and yard less attractive to snakes who are looking for food and shelter.
  • Remove any food sources such as rodents or other pests.
  • Keep pet food sealed in containers.
  • Don’t leave pet food out overnight.
  • Clean up spilled pet food and birdseed from the ground.
  • Don’t overwater your lawn as this can attract worms, frogs, and slugs – another food source for snakes.
  • Have your home inspected for rodents and other pests and maintain routine pest control treatments.
  • Seal any entries into your crawlspace or basement that are larger than 1/4″.
  • Make sure doorsweeps and window screens fit tightly.
  • Cover vents and drains that come into the house.
  • Keep grass mowed – tall grass and weeds provide more coverage for snakes from predators.
  • Clean up any debris snakes can hide under (scarp metal, wood piles, trash, logs, etc.).
  • Check the roof for overhanging vegetation – snakes are good climbers and can access your home from the roof.

If you have a problem with snakes or other wildlife, contact your local pest control company who can help identify pest attractants, points of entry, and provide you with safe and humane snake removal services.

 

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The Best Methods to Avoid Wildlife at Your Business

The Best Methods to Avoid Wildlife at Your Business

Wildlife creatures can bring a host of issues to your business. Some of these can disrupt your business, create unsanitary conditions, and drive customers away. The first step in dealing with these nuisance pests is knowing the type of animal you are dealing with and how to prevent them. We break down which ones to watch out for around your business and give some easy wildlife prevention tips.

Birds

Birds can pose a major health threat to your business as they can spread diseases and contaminate your business space. Their droppings can cause quite a mess and harbor diseases and parasites. These acidic droppings can corrode and ruin your business roof, walkways, windows, ledges, signage, and even your customers’ vehicles. These pests can also easily access and damage the roofline and chimney, which can lead to problems with your electrical wiring.

Rats & Mice

Rats and mice are looking for a place to eat and sleep. They can easily invade your business by entering through the smallest crack or hole that is unsealed. Just like birds, rodents can spread disease throughout your business, making it unsafe for both your customers and team members. These creatures are also known to gnaw on merchandise, packaging, equipment, and electrical wiring.

Squirrels 

Squirrels can look cute and cuddly, but they are also known to create structural damage and disturbances at businesses. These creatures are in search of a food source, and you can tell if they have been searching around in your property by seeing uprooted plants and flowers, dug up holes, and eaten nuts or fruits. Squirrels are also known to create holes in roofs, chew on wires, damage vents, and create a musty smell from their urine if they’ve infested inside the building.

Utilizing preventative measures is the key to ensuring wildlife don’t infest your business and disturb your customers!

  • Inspect the foundation for small holes and gaps, sealing them up as you find them.
  • Inspect the roof and siding to make sure there are no openings to access your attic.
  • Secure all trash containers, making sure they are tightly sealed and not overflowing.
  • If you have an outside area where customers eat, make sure all food is frequently cleaned up and thrown out.
  • Consider Commercial Wildlife Control for your business as service professionals can set your business up with a customized prevention and treatment plan fit for your business.
How to Easily Deter Snakes Away from Your Property

How to Easily Deter Snakes Away from Your Property

As the weather continues to warm up, snakes start to become more active and on the move in search of food. Most homeowners can agree that they fear finding snakes in the yard. But while most of us don’t want snakes hanging out on our property, it’s important to note that these wildlife creatures are beneficial to have around as they can get rid of other pests infesting your property. Instead of eliminating these creatures, every homeowner can take simple preventative measures to encourage them to find a different location to habitat.

Clean the Yard!

Ensuring that your yard is well-kept up is one of the easiest and simple ways to deter snakes from your property. Debris and leaf piles are a huge attractant to rodents which will then attract snakes. The leaf piles are additionally a great place for snakes to hide out in. Make sure you are cleaning up any debris piles, including sticks, brush, and tree limbs from your yard.

Overgrown trees and shrubs provide cover and shelter for snakes. Make sure that you are trimming your overgrown trees and shrubs, so they are not touching the house or garage. Don’t forget to trim the branches off the ground so there is at least 24” to 36” space underneath. This helps eliminate a place for snakes to take cover, but also makes them easier to spot.

Remove Attractant Items!

You might not be aware, but certain items are placed in your yard that could be attracting snakes. While many love to have decorative birdhouses and bird feeders in the yard, they can attract snakes. Some snakes are great climbers and will climb up to feast on the birds feeding on the feeders or living in the birdhouse. Consider placing the birdhouse or feeder on a metal pole or wood post, with the post wrapped in metal sheeting.

Install Backup!

A perch pole is a great alternative to help keep snakes away from the property. Owls or hawks are natural predators to snakes and will use the installed perch pole. Make sure that the pole is in an open area in your yard, so the birds can have a good view of the entire area.

Though, sometimes it’s just best to install fencing to help keep snakes out. If you decide to install fencing, make sure that it’s buried a few inches into the ground and should be made up of ¼” or smaller rigid mesh. At the top of the fence, make sure that it bends to keep snakes from climbing over it.

If you’ve tried all the prevention tips you can to deter snakes away from your yard but it’s not working, it might be time to call your local wildlife control company. These professionals can help establish a regularly scheduled service and treatment plan to help with your snake problem.

 

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Controlling Birds During the Summer Months

Controlling Birds During the Summer Months

As the weather starts to warm up, you may see an increase in bird activity around your home. Birds will often leave a mess on your patio or deck and can even be found taking a dip in your swimming pool. Nuisance birds will build nests in the most inconvenient places putting you and your family in harm’s way. Here are a few tips on how to prevent birds from taking over your outdoor fun this summer.

Protect Your Pool

There are several things you can try to keep birds away from your pool and deck. One of the easiest is to install a decoy bird near your pool. Owl statues are the most common but hawks and falcons will also work well. These statues make other nuisance birds think a predator has already claimed that territory and they will take up residence somewhere else. Remember to move the statue occasionally, especially if birds get used to it or start ignoring it.

You can also use automatic pool vacuums in your swimming pool to help deter birds. Automatic vacuums are constantly moving which discourage birds from landing in the water. Leaving brightly colored toys and floats in the pool can also help keep these pesky birds away. Keep your pool covered if possible. You can even use a simple solar cover instead of a traditional cover to help protect your pool from droppings and feathers.

Guard Your Grill

Birds will often nest in your grill or in the eaves around your patio. To protect your grill in between uses, invest in a high quality cover and use it any time the grill is not in use. If that’s not an option, cover your grill with bird netting when it’s not in use. Clean the grill after use and make sure there is no food residue left over. Birds will keep coming back if they continue to find food in the area.

Defend Your Deck

If you’re finding birds flocking to your deck or patio area, try installing bird spikes on fences or in gutters. It is difficult for birds to land on them, making it undesirable for birds to nest. You can also try wind chimes or ultrasonic noise machines which are also helpful and driving nuisance birds away. The noise machines give off a high-pitched sound that is undetectable to humans but will annoy any lingering birds.

Prepare Your Property

Taking preventative measures against birds will help in your bird control efforts. Discourage people from feeding birds in and around your home. Clean up any spilled grain or birdseed from feeders daily. Block any openings in your home (lofts, vents, eaves, window sills, etc.). Change your ledge angles to 45 degrees or more to prevent birds from roosting on them. Screen the underside of rafters with netting or wire mesh screening.

While birds aren’t usually a dangerous problem, they can become quite a nuisance, especially when you are trying to enjoy time outdoors. If you have a problem with birds or any other pests, contact your local pest control company who can provide you with a thorough evaluation and treatment plan.

 

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