We no longer provide a pest control service, if you have a problem with pigeons around your home, please consider contacting a pest control specialist.
Humans are at risk from unhealthy pigeons. Pigeons can carry a number of potentially infectious diseases such as salmonella, tuberculosis and ornithosis (a mild form of psittacosis - pneumonia-like symptoms).
They are also a source of allergens, which can cause respiratory ailments like pigeon fancier’s lung and allergic skin reaction. There is potential for these illnesses to be spread to people through contact with pigeon droppings, dandruff and feathers; pigeon parasites; or where dead infected pigeons get into food or water sources.
Feeding pigeons affects their health
People who feed pigeons do not help to keep pigeons healthy. The food pigeons get from people may lack essential nutrients, which pigeons require for overall good health. The risk of injury to pigeons attracted to the city by pigeon feeding is also higher. For instance, many pigeons suffer missing and deformed feet after catching them in man-made structures.
Instead of breeding once a year, pigeons now breed almost all year round because of the expanded food supply. The feral pigeon is capable of breeding throughout the year, nests may be found in any month, however the peak occurs between March and July. Usually, two white eggs are laid on consecutive days. Incubation lasts about 18 days with fledging taking place about four ½ weeks later.
A new clutch can be laid when the first young are 20 days old. Therefore up to nine broods may be produced per year by just one female pigeon. Research has shown that this can place considerable pressure on the limited breeding sites making many of them unhealthy, crowded places subject breeding pigeons to considerable physical stress. Mites and other parasites in overcrowded breeding sites can spread disease easily among young pigeons, and fledglings are at an increased risk of attack by mice and rats attracted to permanent breeding sites.
Please don’t feed the pigeons:
- It affects their health
- It attracts vermin and is a risk to human health
- It damages buildings
- It makes pigeons dependent on people
- It deprives other birds of food
Feeding pigeons affects other birds
Feeding feral pigeons can deprive other birds of food and might scare them from your garden. Smaller birds such as thrushes and finches are often frightened away when numbers of much larger pigeons arrive. Feral pigeons can also carry viruses that can be spread to other birds causing death.
Feeding pigeons attracts pests
People who feed pigeons often end up feeding more than they bargained for. On occasions when food is plentiful, pigeons may not always eat everything left out for them. The remaining food goes bad and may attract rats and mice, which can spread disease to humans.