Life Hack: How to keep pigeons and other birds away from your home

There's nothing as annoying as bird poo on a freshly washed car
Life Hack: How to keep pigeons and other birds away from your home

You can deter birds with some handy items around the house

Last week I was chatting with some friends about birds. No, we’re not into bird-watching: they were lamenting the bird poo all around their house. It’s a situation we’re all too familiar with here in Ireland. Is it just me, or can birds sense a freshly washed car? 

Because within five minutes of mine drying, you can bet there’s a big white mark on it. While these marks are unsightly, they also could be a health risk, especially for anyone with small children.

While we want to be rid of our flying friends for those reasons, we obviously don’t want to harm them. That’s why I looked into a number of methods to deter birds from flying near your home and found some simple tricks to keep them away and keep your property poo-free.

Use reflective objects 

If you have any old CDs or DVDs lying around that you know will never be played again, you can use them to create some shiny decorations with a dual purpose. As well as looking pretty, the light they reflect isn’t something birds like and they discourage birds from returning to the area. 

If you have small children, why not get them involved in some fun at-home arts and crafts and let them help you make anything from a simple cd on a string to hang up or a more elaborate wind chime-style display for your garden or outside your front door. 

The benefits include having some pretty garden ornaments as well as a bird-free area.

Orbs and balls 

Apparently, birds confuse orbs and balls hanging from branches for the eyes of predators and will steer clear of them. I know it’s only July, but you could consider breaking into your Christmas decorations and repurposing some old and faded baubles for your garden. 

You can brighten them up with some cheap spray paint and say goodbye to your feathered visitors. Alternatively, many garden ornaments achieve the same result and might be more to your style. Perhaps a nice owl statue would fit in better and keep those birds at bay.

Let your pet outside 

If it’s safe to do so, letting a dog or cat outside can be very effective to keep birds away. Similar to the orb trick, if they spot a predator they generally keep away. Birds like crows have an impressive memory too and could continue to avoid your home if they see your four-legged friend pottering around your garden. 

Of course, if you want to completely avoid your pet bringing a ‘gift’ to your fee, make sure you supervise them while they’re out to ensure their predator instincts don’t kick in fully if they spot a low flying or distracted bird.

More in this section

Price info
Price info

Subscribe to unlock unlimited digital access.
Cancel anytime.

Terms and conditions apply


The best food, health, entertainment and lifestyle content from the Irish Examiner, direct to your inbox.

Sign up