Bird Proofing Schools and Hospitals

Bird Proofing Schools and Hospitals


Pest birds present particular problems for schools and hospital since they deal with children and the sick, individuals who are especially vulnerable to disease. For this reason, school and hospital administrators must be ever vigilant and pro-active in their pursuit of bird proofing their properties.


Birds Invading Schools


Birds, as school administrators and educators know, are attracted to school grounds and structures. Undoubtedly, because there’s an abundance of food scraps on these grounds. Allowed to gather and roost, birds can quickly become pests and pose a number of health and safety hazards. Unfortunately, the rock pigeon, European starling and house sparrow seem to create the most problems around schools. Nests, droppings and other bird debris can block AC and ventilation systems. This is why bird proofing has become so important to schools.


Some schools suffer from roosting turkey vultures, which can become particularly offensive due to their odors. Gulls have been known to harass young school children for food. Swallows may nest on the sides of school buildings, creating a problem by droppings and mites. Flocks of water birds, especially Canada geese, often plague school grounds and athletic fields. These birds can damage turf, and contaminate exterior pools and ponds. Crows have been known to damage certain roofing materials and woodpeckers often drill into wooden buildings. Bird proofing can rid schools of these pests.


The droppings of most any pest bird can create serious potential health hazards. A single pigeon, for example, can excrete up to 25 pounds of droppings every year. These droppings usually end up on outside eating tables, benches, and chairs where students gather for lunch. Droppings also find they way on playground equipment–slides, swings, teeter-totters and jungle gyms–places where younger children play.


Younger children are particularly vulnerable because they tend to be less concerned about washing their hands after recess and during lunch. This poses an alarming health risk since the bacteria, fungal agents and ectoparasites in droppings and nesting materials have been known to carry any of 60 diseases–including histoplasmosis, encephalitis, salmonella, meningitis, and toxoplasmosis, even the West Nile virus. Children of all ages can also slip and fall on fresh bird droppings or those recently dampened by rain or drizzle. This can result in a huge liability for the school and its district. Clearly, bird proofing is an important part of child safety in schools.


Birds Invading Hospitals


Starting with parking structures, pest birds can be a huge problem for hospitals. Pigeons, starlings and sparrows love to nest in the many nooks and crannies of these open multi-level venues. What’s more, their droppings contribute to a negative first impression on hospital visitors and patients.


Heating, ventilation and air conditioning ducts on hospital rooftops are other areas where pest birds have been known to cause serious problems. Pigeons like to gather around air handlers–like HVAC vents. Wind and sun often turn dried bird droppings into dust, which gets sucked into HVAC systems. These fine particles can spread a number of diseases throughout an entire building–a huge risk for any hospital.


Humane, Effective Bird Proofing Solutions


Poisons, shotguns and noise-making devices are not good pest bird deterrents near schools or hospitals. They may also violate federal, state and local wildlife protection ordinances. Fortunately, science and bird psychology have been brought together to create some pretty effective bird proofing solutions for these venues.


Bird Spikes


A highly effective and humane pest bird deterrent, bird spikes deny birds the opportunity to land. Recommended by building contractors, architects, and municipalities, the blunted spikes won’t harm birds or maintenance crews. Bird spikes have been approved by almost every humane group in the world–including The Humane Society of the United States and PICAS. The spikes come in rows of spike strips and won’t get clogged up by entrapping most debris. They are typically available in 3-, 5- and 8-inch widths and two-foot sections, and they can be glued down, nailed or screwed into most any surface.


Some manufacturers offer a Mega Spike, which is typically 7 inches high and fabricated of marine grade stainless steel. These are ideal for deterring large birds like gulls.

Also available is the Gutter Spike, recommended to keep large pest birds from nesting and clogging gutters or drains. Gutter spikes come in two-foot long strips. Some have adjustable clamps at the base so they can be conveniently attached to the lip of a gutter. The best bird spikes have a flexible base to easily conform to curved areas, an ideal feature for hard-to-cover areas.


Bird Repellent Netting


Bird repellent netting has been used with considerable success to keep pest birds away form large outdoor areas. It comes in various types and mesh sizes. If you have a problem with large birds like pigeons or seagulls, you might consider a 1-1/8″ to 2″ mesh size net. For birds like sparrows or starlings, you should install a 3/4″ mesh net. Better repellent netting usually meets ISO 1806 protocols and will last longer. The best netting is also U.V. stabilized, flame resistant and rot- and water-proof. Today, some of the best bird repellent netting can withstand fairly harsh temperature extremes–from flame resistant 250 degree F melting point to “sub-zero” temperatures. In areas where electrical conductivity or radio frequency interference is a problem, you might opt for non-conductive netting. Also note that netting now comes in various colors match a building’s aesthetics.


Finally, Consider Trees Before You Plant


Whether you’re trying to bird proof a school or hospital, it’s important to avoid certain kinds of trees in landscaping near these grounds. For example, fruit trees and fragrant trees will attract birds, resulting in droppings everywhere. You should also avoid planting crab apples and Bradford Pears–birds love these plants.


Alex Kecskes is a freelance writer focusing on effective and humane bird control measures. If you are experiencing a bird problem at a school or hospital, call Bird-B-Gone Inc. – they have an network of experienced installers who can help solve virtually any pest bird problem. 1-800-392-6915

Article from

Related Blogs

Bird Proofing for Architects and Engineers

Bird Proofing for Architects and Engineers

Whether you’re planning a hospital or hotel, an office building or retail complex, clients are increasingly expressing concern over bird defacement and damage. While the building or structure may look magnificent when completed, without effective bird proofing measures, pest birds soon invade to poop all over signs, roofs and beautiful facades.


Pigeons are probably the worst offenders, with each bird averaging about 25 pounds of droppings annually. Multiply that times several hundred birds per location and you’ve got quite a mess on your hands. Hawks and swallows may occasionally cause unexpected and unusual pest bird problems. And blackbirds and crows have certainly done their share of damage. Even woodpeckers have been known to peck unsightly holes into wood facades while digging for insects or to simply communicate with other woodpeckers. Without bird proofing, your beautiful building can lose its luster fairly quickly.


As most people know, much of the damage done by birds is caused by bird droppings. The acidity in these droppings can severely degrade most stone and metal materials, eventually reaching substrate areas to cause irreparable damage. Birds are often drawn in large flocks to the nooks, crannies and porticos of structures. They like to build nests on roof ledges, windowsills, and building projections. And they enjoy perching and pooping all over signs, statues, trusses and beams. These areas not only offer high visibility from which to observe potential food sources, but they provide shelter and protection from ground-based predators.

Architectural Bird Control

When planning a building or structure, it’s best to incorporate effective bird proofing measures in the design.  Some of the most popular bird deterrent strategies include:

Bird Spikes

These ubiquitous devices are ideal for deterring large pest birds such as pigeons, seagulls and crows. Spikes work because birds simply can’t find a way to land around them. After a few unsuccessful landing attempts, pest birds move on. Bird spikes are recommended by building contractors and architects and they have been approved by almost every humane group in the world–including the U.S. Humane Society and PICAS. Bird proofing with bird spikes is harmless to birds, people and pets.

Bird spikes usually come two ways: in rugged stainless steel or rigid U.V.-resistant unbreakable polycarbonate. The poly spikes are less expensive than their steel counterparts and preferred for use in areas where the electrical conductivity of steel might pose a problem. Poly bird spikes can also be used near cell phone and dish antennas. And they are ideal for use on air traffic control towers.


Some bird spikes are available with a crush-proof, non-reflective metal finish. One manufacturer makes a bird proof spike with a polycarbonate base that can be bent to fit curved surfaces. And most of your clients will like the fact that bird spikes now come in a variety of colors, including crystal clear, brick red, light grey, brown, black and tan, making this one bird proofing solution that blends in aesthetically with its surroundings.


To deter the widest range of bird species, bird spikes typically come in 3-, 5- and 8-inch widths and two-foot sections. To deter really large birds, there’s the Mega Spike, ideal for keeping seagulls, cormorants, turkey vultures and raptors from landing. The spikes are typically 7 inches high and fabricated of marine grade stainless steel to last longer.


To keep pest birds out of rain gutters, there’s the Gutter Spike. This bird-proofing device is designed to keep large pest birds (like seagulls, crows, and pigeons) from nesting and clogging gutters or drains. Gutter spikes usually come in two-foot long strips. Some have adjustable clamps at the base so they can be conveniently attached to the lip of a gutter.


Slippery Slopes


Bird Slopes are probably the most “invisible” bird-proofing device you can specify. And they’re ideal for new construction and retrofits or upgrades. These angled PVC panels work their magic by denying pest birds a place to land. Pest birds just can seem to get a solid footing on these panels, so the birds just leave for better landing zones. Sloped panels are ideal for keeping even the most stubborn birds off eaves, ledges, beams and other niches. They’re easily installed on almost any surface using nails, screws or glue. And something your client will appreciate: bird slope panels even come in different colors to blend in seamlessly with a building’s décor.


Bird Proof Netting


Another highly effective bird proofing measure, especially for large commercial buildings or structures is Bird Netting. Netting is the most basic of exclusion measures, denying birds access to areas where they may damage or deface property. Most bird netting comes in a wide range of types and mesh sizes to deter many species of birds. For big birds like pigeons or seagulls, choose a 1-1/8-inch to 2-inch mesh size. For sparrows or starlings, you might opt for a 3/4-inch mesh.


It’s important to get high quality netting that lasts. The best bird proof netting meets ISO 1806 protocols and is U.V. stabilized, flame resistant and rot- and water-proof. One brand of bird proof netting can hold up under some pretty harsh temperature extremes–like 250-degree Fahrenheit or “sub-zero” temperatures. In areas where electrical conductivity or radio frequency interference can be a problem, opt for non-conductive netting.


There’s also heavy-duty netting made of high-strength polyethylene. Some manufacturers offer really tough netting that has a burst strength of up to 40 pounds. Netting like this will typically come with a long guarantee –as long as 10 years. Once again, your clients will like the fact that today’s bird proof netting comes in several different colors–including white, stone and black.


Misting Systems


Set up to spray a fine mist of methyl anthranilate, a harmless but irritating grape extract, misting systems are ideal for a wide range of both indoor and outdoor applications. These bird-proofing systems deter sparrows, pigeons, starlings, crows, blackbirds and geese. The systems are easy to install and set up, and they work well to discourage pest birds from infiltrating commercial garages, warehouse areas, airline hangars, courtyards, parking lots and many other structures.


Electric Track Systems

If your property’s been inundated with pigeons, seagulls and larger birds, one effective and humane bird proof solution worth trying is the Electric Track. These nifty devices “persuade” pest birds not to land by conveying a mild electric shock to their feet. The tracks are easy to install on ledges, signs, rooftops, and flat or curved surfaces. Some systems are low profile and virtually invisible from ground level. The best tracks feature a flow-through design that keeps water from damming up on rooftops. If you want the tracks to last in harsh weather, opt for corrosion-resistant tracks that resist alkali and acidic environments.

Alex Kecskes is a freelance writer focusing on proffesional bird control methods and products. To learn more about the products listed in this article, please visit Bird-B-Gone – the nations leading manufacturer of bird deterrents.

Article from

Related Blogs

  • Related Blogs on Architects

Bird Proofing for the Roofing Industry

Bird Proofing for the Roofing Industry

As a professional roofer, you’ve undoubtedly seen the damage that pest birds can do to a roof. Whether it’s a wood, tile or asphalt shingle roof, birds can cost property owners hundreds, even thousands of dollars in roof damage. Over time, bird nests, droppings and other debris can severely degrade a roof, causing it to leak and possibly even collapse. All the more reason to add bird proofing to your roofing services. For just a little extra cost, your customers will thank you for protecting their investment, and you will have an opportunity to add an extra source of income to your roofing business.


Roofs are Vulnerable


The average roof is vulnerable to all manner of pest birds. The reason is simple: most roofs offer birds a nice place to nest and roost. They also provide a safe perch from which to look for food, and many roofs conceal a hefty diet of insects to feed on. When birds hunt for insects burrowed in roofs, their beaks peck away at shingles and rafters, which can create ever-widening gaps where water can enter. To make matters worse, many birds build their nests under roofing tiles, which can cause damage and leaks. Pigeons, starlings and sparrows will often build their nests in these areas, causing water to rise and leak under tiles. Without effective bird proofing measures, roofs are at the mercy of these pests.


Pest Birds Can be Costly


Bird droppings can also cause significant damage. The acidic content of bird waste can destroy tar-based roofing materials and damage roof-mounted air conditioning equipment, attic ventilation turbines, skylights, solar panels, and solar water heaters. Your customers probably have a pretty good idea just how expensive these items are to repair or replace. Proper bird proofing can deter pest birds and save your customers from these bird-related expenses.


Pest Birds can be Dangerous


Pest birds have also been known to cause fires. The straw, twigs and dried droppings found in bird nests can be very flammable. Nests built near AC units, solar panels or other rooftop electrical equipment can become a fire hazard. Finally, and this point can’t be stressed strongly enough, bird nests have been known to block chimneys and ventilation systems, which can block airflow, resulting in deadly carbon monoxide poisoning.


Effective Bird Proofing Methods


Today’s effective and humane bird proofing devices and systems are easy to install and virtually maintenance free. They allow you to give your customers the added peace of mind in knowing that their investment has an added layer of protection.


Bird Spikes


The highly regarded Bird Spike has been used throughout the world to bird proof roofs and structures for decades. The spiked strips may appear dangerous, but most spikes are blunted and safe for birds, pets and work crews. The spikes have been scientifically designed to deny birds landing access, so birds just move on. Spikes come in durable stainless steel or stiff, unbreakable polycarbonate.


For properties located near an ocean or lake, there’s the Mega Spike, which boasts long 7-inch spikes to deter seagulls and cormorants. To keep pest birds out of rain gutters, there’s the Gutter Spike, which typically comes with adjustable clamps at the base that attach easily to the lip of a gutter.


Marine grade stainless steel spikes will last longer. And crush-proof, non-reflective spikes with a metal finish will blend in nicely on most roofs. If your customers are concerned about aesthetics, bird spikes now come in several colors–including crystal clear, brick red, light grey, brown, black and tan. Plastic spikes can be used in areas where electrical conductivity or microwave interference presents a problem (roofs with cell-phone antennas, dish antennas and air traffic control towers). Bird spikes with a U.V.-protected polycarbonate base are recommended in inclement weather.


Bird Slopes


Combining bird proofing with aesthetics, Bird Slopes have been well received by property owners. These angled PVC panels are so smooth that birds simply can’t get a solid footing and leave. Bird slopes are ideal for bird-proofing eaves, ledges, and all those nooks and crannies birds love to call home. They’re easy to install on almost any flat surface using nails, screws or glue. They also come in several colors to match a property’s exterior décor.


Misting Systems


For larger commercial or industrial properties, misting systems offer an ideal bird proofing solution. These spray a fine mist of food-grade methyl anthranilate to deter ever the most stubborn pest birds. The chemical they use is a non-lethal grape extract regulated by the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) under FIFRA (the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act). The mist irritates a nerve in a bird’s mucus membrane, which won’t harm birds, people or pets. The systems are easy to install and the best systems can be programmed to turn on and off at predetermined times.


Bird Gels


Ideal for bird proofing specific areas where pest birds seem to gather, Bird Gels make birds feel very uncomfortable. The gel never really dries (it stays tacky for up to six months) and birds hate to step on the stuff. The gel goes on easy using a basic caulking gun. It’s safe for most bird species and ideal for use on ledges, conduit, pipes, and parapet walls.


Electric Tracks


Another preferred bird proofing measure for specific troublesome areas, Electric Tracks convince pest birds to move on or get zapped by a mild electric shock. The electric shock won’t harm birds, pets or humans. Electric tracks are ideal for protecting roofs against all species of pest birds. The best electric tracks have a flow-through design to keep water from pooling around them and leaking into rooftop areas.

Alex Kecskes is a freelance writer focusing on effective bird control. To learn more about the products listed in this article, or how to add bird control on as an add on service, visit Bird-B-Gone, Inc. where you will find a complete line of professional grade bird deterrents.

Article from

Related Blogs

Bird Proofing for the Food, Restuarant and Hotel Industry

Bird Proofing for the Food, Restuarant and Hotel Industry

If you own or operate a restaurant or hotel, or you’re involved with the sale or packaging of food, you’re probably aware of the problems birds can cause.  Unless you arm yourself with effective bird proofing measures, birds can negatively affect the image of your business and cost you money.


The Health Hazards of Bird Droppings


It’s one of the many things health inspectors look for–bird droppings. Many a food establishment has been cited for having this unhealthful offal on or near food preparation areas, or areas where food is stored or served. Without effective bird proofing measures, bird droppings not only create offensive odors, they can carry any of 60 known diseases. Sparrows and feral pigeons, for example, can carry bacteria causing salmonellosis. Pigeons can also carry ornithosis, a disease similar to viral pneumonia. This makes pest birds especially onerous near hotels and restaurants or anywhere food is exposed.


Unsightly and Unsafe


When bird droppings litter a hotel sign or cover an outdoor restaurant’s tables and chairs, patrons will turn away and take their business elsewhere.  Nothing is a bigger turn off than exterior umbrellas covered with bird droppings. There’s also the big liability problem that bird droppings create. Left to gather on walkways, entryways and patios, bird droppings can create serious slip-and-fall hazards. About as slippery as a banana peel, wet bird droppings can result in a prohibitively expensive and time-consuming legal liability for any hotel, restaurant or eatery.


Fortunately, there are a number of effective bird proofing measures available to the food restaurant and hotel industry.


Bird Spikes to the Rescue


Among the most popular bird proofing deterrents is the Bird Spike. Ideal for pigeons and other large birds, these spikes make it almost impossible for pest birds to land. The porcupine-looking spikes can be quite intimidating to a bird, yet because they are blunted at the tip, they are safe for use around birds and maintenance crews. Bird Spikes come in strong, rigid unbreakable polycarbonate or flexible stainless steel. The best spikes are made of marine-grade stainless steel and feature a U.V.-protected polycarbonate base that you can angle to fit curved surfaces. Also available are spikes with a crush proof, non-reflective metal finish.


To keep large pest birds like seagulls, crows, and pigeons out of rain gutters, there’s a bird proofing device called the Gutter Spike. The best of these spikes comes with adjustable clamps at the base that make it easy to install to the lip of a gutter. If you’re being bothered by cormorants, turkey vultures, raptors and other large birds, you should consider the Mega Spike, which has long 7″ spikes.


Many restaurants have also employed the Bird Spider. These versatile bird-proofing devices can be moved from one area to another to discourage pest birds from gathering in any one area. They have long spindly spider-like arms that wave in the breeze. Pest birds feel threatened by the tentacles and they simply move on to “safer” areas. Bird spiders are often used on outdoor restaurant tables before opening hours to keep pest birds from landing on tables. Many are used on awnings and patio covers. Spiders typically come in a variety of diameters (arm lengths) to deter a wide range of pest birds. And like bird spikes, they may look threatening, but they are harmless to birds and people.


Bird Netting


Bird netting has long been used to physically exclude pest birds from the signs, courtyards, canopies, and rooftops of hotels and restaurants. Often prescribed by architects, bird netting has proven to be an effective bird proofing solution. It comes in a variety of mesh sizes to deter sparrow, starlings, pigeons, seagulls and larger birds. And you can now get netting in several colors–white, stone and black–to match building’s color scheme. The best netting usually meets ISO 1806 protocols and will hold up longer.


Bird Slopes


Another popular bird proofing device is the Bird Slope. Pest birds simply slide off these angled, slippery PVC panels whenever they attempt a landing. Ideal for eaves, ledges, beams and other 90-degree areas frequented by birds, these slopes are easily screwed, glued or nailed to most any flat surface. They even come in a variety of colors to match a building’s exterior décor.


Bird Repellers


Solar bird repellers can be used on outdoor eating areas such as tables, fence lines and other flat surfaces pest birds like to land. Solar bird repellers have adjustable “arms” that spin in a five-foot diameter, protecting surfaces from pest birds such as pigeons, seagulls and other large birds.  Rechargeable batteries allow the solar repeller to operate during dark periods.


Electric Tracks


If your hotel or restaurant has been invaded by pigeons, seagulls or larger birds, you can bird proof specific areas with Electric Track. These versatile devices convince pest birds to move on by zapping them with a mild electric shock. Like the shock you get when you reach for a doorknob after walking across the carpet with rubber-soled shoes, electric tracks are harmless but effective. The tracks are easy to install on ledges, signs, rooftops, and most any flat or curved surface. Some electric tracks are low profile and almost invisible from ground level. The best electric tracks feature a flow-through design that keeps water from damming up on rooftops. To ensure the tracks stand up to punishing weather, choose corrosion-resistant tracks that resist alkali and acidic environments.


Bird Misting Systems


Ideal for outdoor areas, Misting Systems deliver an ultra fine mist to deter pest birds. The chemical used by these systems is methyl anthranilate, a grape extract that naturally occurs in concord grapes. The chemical is safe to use around people, plants and birds. Misting systems are highly effective as a bird proofing measure and will deter sparrows, pigeons, starlings, crows, blackbirds and geese where they fly.



Alex Kecskes is a freelance writer focusing on effective and humane bird cotnrol measures. To learn more about the products mentioned in this article, or if you need to find a company that can help install bird cotnrol products, please visit Bird-B-Gone or call 1-800-392-6915

Article from

Find More Bird Articles

Related Blogs

Squirrel Proofing Bird Feeders – Techniques to Birdproof Feeders

Squirrel Proofing Bird Feeders – Techniques to Birdproof Feeders

There are really 2 basic approaches to keeping squirrels out of your bird feeder.  The first is to simply try to block them from getting to the feeder.  There are two common types of feeders that do that.

Baffled Bird Feeder – By simply restricting access to the the food in the feeder, you frustrate them and they move off.  The advantage to using a baffle is that it more or less separates the squirrel proof barrier from the feeder itself, so that the bird have free access to the bird seed, and any size bird can still use the feeder.  This is often the more aesthetic approach.  This is often done by pole mounting the feeder, and putting the baffle on the pole.  Other types use a hanging arrangement and the baffle forms a roof over the feeder.

The disadvantage of this approach is that squirrels can leap large distances, and are incredibly agile climbers, so that they will often find a way to land on the actual feeder and bypass the baffling.  With the top mounted feeder you may also find a squirrel smart enough to climb down and cause the feeder to swing, and while they may not gain access to the feeder itself they can cause the bird food to spill to the ground, where they can get all the food they want.

Caged Bird Feeders – Another very common solution is to use a caged feeder.  These are easy to spot, the construction includes some type of cage around the actual feeder area.  It’s a fairly open mesh, and in fact a tube style caged feeder looks similar to an electronic bug zapper with the open mesh surrounding the tube.

Caged feeders are better at keeping the squirrels out of the feeder, but they can still get to it and scare off the birds that are trying to use the feeder.  This is often the case when you are trying to attract smaller birds.

The second approach to getting rid of squirrels in your bird feeder is to move them out.  The much more effective types of squirrel proof feeders are those that cause the squirrel to fall off or be thrown from the feeder.  There are two types of those feeders as well,  weight activated feeders and the battery powered or electronic motorized feeders.  While this won’t harm the squirrels they are fun to watch in action.

To see more on squirrel proof feeders, or other ideas like squirrel baffles for your bird feeders, or other birding accessories like bird baths go to

Article from

WordPress Plugins