Birds are a natural part of our environment. People wouldn’t watch them if they weren’t pretty or interesting and nobody would have birdbaths and feeders if they didn’t want to attract them. However, they cause a problem when they overstay their welcome on our buildings. It should be understood that birds are only using your building and roof, albeit at your expense, to carry out their life cycle. They are looking for a safe place to nest and have their babies. Watching the sparrows and starlings in the bird feeder or feeding the pigeons in the park is all well and good when you know you will never have to deal with an auditor coming around the corner. Unfortunately, they can choose spots inside and on businesses that can pose risks to many different industries. In the commercial world, most notably, food processing, warehousing, and property management, birds are a serious public health pest. Read on for the top three reasons why birds are bad for business.
- Bird droppings. Bird droppings are not only unsightly, but they can carry more than 60 different kinds of diseases including histoplasmosis, Cryptococcus, ectoparasites, Salmonella, and E. coli. The World Health Organization reports that birds are also the principal reservoir for viruses associated with eastern and western equine encephalitis, St. Louis encephalitis, West Nile virus, and even some influenza viruses. The presence of birds in a food processing plant can lead to failed audits, lost contracts, and loss of revenue not to mention make employees and customers sick. The droppings are disgusting and disease-ridden, but they are also a slip and fall hazard. If you have enough birds around your building, their droppings will freeze in the winter, and during rainy days will become almost just as slick. Whether you manage a multifamily property where your main mission is to keep your residents safe or an office building where a slip and fall from a tenant can turn into a litigation nightmare, this is an avoidable issue with bird repellants.
- Property damage. Birds and their droppings can do structural damage to buildings – both inside and out. Bird droppings are caustic to most construction materials including wood, cement, and steel and are corrosive to building materials. Over time, this can degrade the integrity of facilities and structures. Their nesting materials and dropping are instantly unsightly, discoloring paint and leaving marks that can leave an undesirable impression. That can be a serious problem with even a small bird infestation. The cost to fix this type of damage is often more than the bird exclusion and deterrent strategies you could have had to keep them away. And fixing the damage won’t keep them away. So, if you already have bird damage, once you get it fixed, have bird repellents installed by a reputable company. You don’t want to start a vicious cycle that can cost you a lot of money over and over.
- Reputation. While spreading disease-causing pathogens and destroying property is enough reason to deal with these pests, your business’s brand and reputation are also at risk. Birds, unlike many other pests, are an easily visible problem, even when they are not physically present. Not only can you see the birds themselves, but you can also see their droppings, molted feathers, nesting materials, and the damage they cause to structures. What’s more, the presence of nesting birds can lead to mite infestations. While bird mite bites are not linked to disease transmission, they can cause discomfort and severe irritation. All of this can hurt a business’s reputation. The easiest way to deal with mites – and the birds that can bring them in – is prevention, and the first line of defense is mitigating bird pressures. Bird deterrents like bird spikes, netting, ledge guards, etc. are a great way to keep birds from roosting on the outside of your building. And for more serious bird issues, like nesting, exclusion tactics can be deployed. Some companies even offer custom solutions based on your industry and the shape of your building.
When it comes down to it, you don’t want to hurt the birds, so you should not be looking for a bird exterminator to take care of these top three issues. But there are bird solutions and bird control strategies that can help. As long as the bird control services are performed by understanding the bird’s behavior, what type of pressures they are displaying (nesting, loafing, roosting, etc.), and what deters and attracts them, they can help avoid all this. Every bird removal strategy should be tailored to your building with a focus on the principle that they would be better off in a more natural environment. This gets rid of the bird problem for you while helping them get back to where they belong – in nature.