Big bird problem

useful bamboo

Well, not a BIG bird problem,  like there’s no big yellow guy here from Sesame Street.  It’s a big BIRD problem.

For several weeks, several hundred black birds have been flying in every night to roost in my bamboo.  Either starlings, or my son says grackles.  Whatever, too many birds, anyway. They swarm in black swarms and settle in all the trees around here, then a few at a time fly into the bamboo.

I like to go out and pester them near dark.  If you go over there and talk, or shake some bamboo, there is a lot of fluttering of wings and some chatter and maybe a hundred fly out and come back in right away.  So at first it was kinda cute.  But they haven’t stopped coming; they’re there every night.  They scare the neighbors as they walk up the alley beside the house.

And now, the whole area is starting to smell like a bird cage that should have been cleaned, oh maybe last week sometime.  That can’t be healthy to have around.

So, I’ve gone on a search for a way to get rid of the birds.  I don’t want them dead for sure, I just want them out of here. No poison can be used cos there are lots of other animals around.  And nobody wants hundreds of dead birds to deal with either, no.

Searched online first.  There is a machine that makes sounds like birds being killed and has distress calls. The machine costs about $200 and it says it’s loud enough to disturb near by neighbors. And reading the reviews, some say it works, other say it doesn’t.  $200 experiment, no thanks.

Several sites suggested putting netting “over the trees” where the birds are.  So for this large, very tall, grove of bamboo, I’d need an airplane or helicopter to drop the biggest net you could imagine down on top of the bamboo. Uhhh, no.

So then I started calling local pest control and exterminators.  Got some answers.

Cut down the bamboo. Uhh, no.

Birds?  We can get then out of a building, but not out of trees.

No, we just do bugs. Do you have bugs?  No, I just have birds.

We can put sharp spikes in the trees as a deterrent.  Did you hear me say this is bamboo?  Lots of it.

So, finally one big exterminator company said they can get birds out of trees and bamboo etc.  The guy will come to talk to me about the details.  The man on the phone said the technician would be able to come at 7 PM on Saturday, would that be ok?  It’s a little odd to me, but yes, then he can actually see the swarms of the birds coming in, good timing!

Maybe they’ll find a way to get the birds to go to the woods behind the house.  They’d be spread out over a bigger area, and not cause anybody any problems.  No more bird cage smell in the back yard, I hope.


12 responses to “Big bird problem

  1. Wow! It sounds like starlings but unless I see one of them I can’t tell. You could try and tie some reflexive ribbon or aluminum pie plates in various places all over the bush in a way that they moved when the wind kicked up. The movement might scare them enough that they are motivated to find another roosting place. I hope the company that comes out on Saturday can get the issue sorted out for you.

  2. Jackie that reflective stuff and pie plates, the grove of bamboo is big and tall. I can’t tie things anywhere near the top. Thanks for your thoughts and help tho!

  3. I will ask Mr. Bowie to look into this problem. I’m sure he can help you with this matter… 😉

    • He is so knowledgeable about so many things…….thanks dear friend, and thank him for me! I hope you are both enjoying spring and your beautiful gardens.

  4. Did the bird man help you with the problem? If not, have you thought about getting an artificial bird of prey and mounting it on top of a tall pole just outside of the bamboo where the black birds can see it? I’ve seen a couple of the artificial birds with wings that move in the wind so it looks like they are on the prowl. Just a thought.

    • Not yet but I’ve checked out all the possibilities and will be making arrangements for them to come. Things like the artificial owls are good for only a short time, everybody tells me, cos they get used to it when it proves not to be a threat cos it never does anything. Thanks for the idea tho.

  5. Pingback: Bamboo…….er, bird issues | Sarasin's thoughts.......·

  6. The same situation happens every year across the way from us.
    They started using a shotgun (not recommended) to try to scare them off. Eventually, the birds do move on after about 6 weeks. The numbers seem to have decreased from one year to the next.

    • No, shotgun definitely not recommended. And I live in town so I can’t shoot any firearm. But with about half the bamboo, and vigilance with my paintball gun every night since, fewer are coming now, maybe a couple dozen the last couple nights. Recommendations are to keep up the harassment every night as they’re coming in till they give it up totally and move to the woods. I’m dong that! This is their first year of doing this, so I’ll still have to watch later in the season and also next year. No more big guano!

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