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Bird Proofing – Securing Your Eaves against Starlings

Starlings (Sturnus vulgaris) are one of the UK’s most common garden birds, and can be sighted all year round.  They are cavity nesters, and often choose house eaves as a nesting spot. Such spaces provide protection from the weather and predators but can be very inconvenient for the homeowner!

A Spring Starling Murmuration

A Spring Starling Murmuration

Why are Starlings considered to be a Pest?

The acidity in starling faeces can cause degradation to your property. Droppings also look unsightly and can create a health hazard. Starlings also congregate in large flocks, called murmurations , which, whilst are a sight to behold, can create a great deal of noise and additional mess.

How do I Stop Starlings from Nesting in the Eaves of My House?

In the UK, all wild birds and their eggs are protected by the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 (with certain exceptions ). 

This means it is illegal to intentionally kill, injure or take a wild bird, or to take, damage or destroy an active nest or its contents.

With this in mind, Avon Pest Control recommend the best course of action is to bird proof the eaves of your home to prevent Starlings from nesting in the first instance.

What is Bird Proofing?

Proofing provides protection from birds nesting in an area you do not want them to. There are a variety of different ways to bird proof your eaves.

Some popular choices include:

  • Mesh and Netting – this is a common bird proofing method, which prevents bird access to wherever it is installed.
  • Bird spikes – a common method which creates a barrier to birds landing on protected surfaces.

Avon Pest Control suggest contacting a professional pest control agency to discuss the best bird proofing options to suit you and your home.

When is the Best Time to Bird Proof My Home?

The ideal time to proof your home against Starlings is before the start of the nesting season, which typically happens between late February and early April in the UK.

This is when the birds start looking for suitable nesting sites and if they find an unprotected eaves they might build a nest.

By installing barriers, such as mesh or spikes, before the birds start looking for nesting sites, you can prevent them from nesting in your eaves.

Starling bird flock

Starling bird flock flying and perching in urban environment

Starlings are Already Nesting in the Eaves of My Home, what should I do?

If you have discovered that starlings are building or have built a nest in your eaves, and the nest is still active, you will need to leave the nest undisturbed until around July when the fledglings have flown.

Moving or interfering with a nest at the wrong time could mean you are breaking the law, and you may face prosecution.

The maximum penalty this offense carries is six months’ imprisonment and an unlimited fine.

If you are worried Starlings have moved into your eaves, or would like to discuss bird proofing options, contact Avon Pest Control today.


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