Description and Identification
Although the pigeon does not have a natural resident range in the United States, in its domesticated form, the feral pigeons are introduced on a wide range, and are extremely common in cities around much of the world. They are prevalent in southern Canada, Mexico and the United States, including Hawaii.
Extremely dependent on humans, pigeons rely very little on themselves to provide food and sites for roosting and nesting. Although they are commonly found around farm yards, grain elevators and feed mills, pigeons are a staple in many parks, on city buildings, bridges, and other structures.
Diet and Feeding Tendencies
Even though they are primarily seed and grain feeders and seek out spilled or improperly stored grain in more rural areas, pigeons also feed on garbage, manure and insects. The fact that in some urban areas it is certainly not uncommon for people to intentionally feed pigeons opens the door for the birds to take up permanent residence in a particular area.
Droppings from the birds will not only stain but also advance the deterioration of buildings where they roost. Certainly the presence of pigeons will increase the cost of maintenance. Large quantities of bird feces will often kill vegetation, produce objectionable odors, and becomes aesthetically unpleasing when left unchecked on statues, park benches and sidewalks.
Pigeons are know to carry and transfer diseases to both people and livestock due to their droppings. Among common pigeon diseases are ornithosis, encephalitis, toxoplasmosis Newcastle disease, cryptococcosis, and salmonella food poisoning. Structures that are inhabited by pigeons not only sustain damage from manure droppings, but can also harbor diseases.
Pigeons also attract and carry various species of fleas, lice, mites, and ticks, many of which readily bite. Pigeons that take up residence in and around airports can also pose a risk to humans due potential bird-aircraft collisions. Pigeons are actually considered a medium priority hazard to jet aircraft by the US Air Force.
A pigeon control program that will combine both lethal and non lethal techniques can certainly be worth the investment--especially when you consider the economic damage and health threats caused by large populations of the birds.
In the event pigeons become a pest control problem on and around your property, they can be difficult to remove, and even harder to discourage from returning. Since damage from these birds can be fairly extensive, it's important to seek professional help with the first signs of trouble.
Professionals in your area with a well established set of techniques for removal can help you to control pigeon populations and take steps to assure that they won't come back.
Animal Control - Interesting Facts
An adult rat can squeeze into a hole in your house as small as the size of a quarter.