Birds are majestic creatures, and we can all agree on that at least. When these flying animals start setting up nests around our homes, though, it can be quite a nuisance.
Especially when these birds decide that your gutters or air conditions are suitable places to build their homes on. Sadly, that’s not the case. Bird nests may look pretty, but they’re rather harmful.
As such, this guide will show you how to stop birds nesting in gutters and why it’s a problem that needs to be dealt with right away. Let’s get down to it!
How Do You Keep Birds Out of the Gutter?
Lucky for you, keeping birds out of the gutter is actually an incredibly easy feat. In this section, you’ll find five quick and simple solutions to this pressing issue.
Some of these fixes are more expensive than others, while a few are a lot of fun to put up and have on your roof. Here they are:
1 – Installing Gutter Covers
The first and most common solution includes installing gutter covers. These products will keep more than just the birds out, but they’ll also prevent leaves and debris from collecting into your gutters.
In other words, gutter covers are permanent fixes to your bird nesting issues. Additionally, these covers will reduce the number of times you’ll need to clean out your gutters as well.
Note though, that most gutter covers need to be installed by professionals as these items typically cover the entire roof. Plus, there are two main types of covers that you can choose from and they include the following:
Aluminum Gutter Covers
The hardiest cover in the market is any that’s made from aluminum. This material can withstand strong weather conditions, such as frequent winds, heavy rain pour, and snow.
Aluminum’s durability also means that you don’t have to change the covers too often—or maybe never. They won’t bend or become brittle over time so rest easy that they’ll stop your problems from happening again.
Steel mesh is another type of gutter guard that functions similarly to aluminum ones. They may not be just as durable or have a long using life, but hardware cloth will still keep leaves, birds, and dirt away from your gutters.
Additionally, steel mesh is more budget-friendly and easier to install than aluminum covers. That’s likely why hardware cloth can dent pretty quickly.
2 – Put Up Decoys of Predators
Why not have some fun with the birds and put up some decoys of predators? That’s a sure way to keep them out of your yard entirely.
Since birds have incredible eyesight, they’re sure to see the fake predator while in flight. They wouldn’t want to set up a home where their baby chicks will be at risk.
Of course, not many think this method is that practical. That’s mainly because birds can slowly become assimilated with inactive predators. The birds then decide that a place is nest-safe so long as they stay away from them.
In other words, you’ll need to regularly move these fake animals of prey around so your neighborhood birds know your house isn’t safe. Not just that, but you also need to nail these rubber toys down in case you get a lot of wind or rain where you live.
There are many options to choose from and we go through them all below.
Rubber snakes are most effective in scaring birds away. Twirl one around a tree or have one hiding among the bushes. You can prop a snake on your roof or porch as well.
Always make sure to move your snakes around though so that it looks realistic.
Owls or Birds of Prey
Owls, hawks, eagles, and other birds of prey are other great options to keep the birds away. They’re easier to put up around your home too.
The attack spider is a battery-operated product that’s noise activated. At the sound of a bird approaching, the spider will drop down off its 18″ line and scare it off.
You should prop attack spiders onto a large surface area around your gutter. We recommend putting several up—just to be extra careful.
3 – Consider Bird Repellent
Environmentalists may not prefer this option, however, it does work. On the plus side at least, it doesn’t harm the birds or poison them in any way. Bird repellent simply makes them feel uncomfortable, so much so that they don’t build their nests there.
Much like cockroach or ant repellent, bird repellent is a powdery product that has a scent that diverts these flying creatures away.
Sometimes though, a bird repellent can come in a gel paste or a spray solution, not necessarily a granule powder. Keep in mind as well that you’ll need to reapply this product from time to time.
That’s because it can wash away or get replaced with other overwhelming scents, and thus lose its effectiveness.
4 – Invest in Sound Technology
Sound systems are naturally pretty expensive. It takes a lot of money to buy them and install them around the perimeter. Not to mention maintaining the speakers as well as protecting them against the weather elements.
That said, sound technology is as effective as it gets to stopping birds nesting in your gutters—or anywhere around your house for that matter. The speakers will play day-round sounds of predators and high pitch frequencies that’ll deter the birds.
Your neighbors might complain about this solution, though, so just keep that in mind. You can opt for setting up ultrasonic bird repellers only as humans can’t hear that frequency. They’re just as costly as sound speakers, however.
5 – Put Up Bird Spikes
Bird spikes come in different sizes, shapes, and materials but their purpose is one. Their protruding tips prevent a bird’s feet from gripping certain surfaces. As a result, the bird learns this place isn’t habitable and moves on.
One advantage to using bird spikes is that they’re quite affordable and are pretty easy to install. All you need is some adhesive glue or screws and nails if the gutter allows for that.
Another benefit is that they’re just as durable as gutter covers, for instance. Bird spikes are a permanent solution that doesn’t require regular maintenance or checking.
Additionally, these items can last for up to four years before they need to be replaced, depending on the extremities of your state’s weather.
We know the product is marketed as spikes, but they don’t actually harm the birds, so don’t worry about using them! The spikes have blunt edges so they will never be able to impale the creature in any way.
So, with that in mind, there are two main types of birds spikes you could choose from, and they are:
Stainless Steel Spikes
Stainless steel spikes have typically long tips and they protrude in all directions. Installing them isn’t hard and they can fit easily onto any surface.
We recommend stainless spikes if you live somewhere where the weather is tricky. As such, you need a material that’s durable and withstanding.
Plastic Gutter Spikes
Plastic bird spikes are just as durable as stainless spikes, but they might only last two years in harsh weather conditions.
However, one advantage they have over stainless spikes is that plastic has a higher visual impact on birds.
6 – Set Up a Bird Home Elsewhere
Our last solution is the most humane one. Provide those restless, homeless birds with a house where they can nest and be safe.
By putting up a birdhouse somewhere in your garden, you’re keeping interested birds away from your gutters while also giving them a place to stay. You’re really just hitting two birds with one stone (well, not literally).
A nest box is also another great home to purchase and set up for your new garden pets. Remember to install these birdhouses away from your windows as birds are known to be noisy and messy creatures.
What To Do With a Bird’s Nest in Your Gutters
According to a federal law put forward by Wildlife & Countryside, it’s illegal to remove a bird’s nest during its nesting seasons (early fall and spring). Outside of those months, it should be okay to remove a bird’s nest.
That said, taking apart a bird’s nest is not an easy task and neither is it a safe one. Birds carry around many harmful pathogens, viruses, and diseases. You should be properly dressed in protective gear before you go out and remove a bird’s home.
Many opt to have a professional come and do it instead so they can determine whether it’s both legal as well as safe to remove the nest in the first place.
Either way, once you’ve removed the nest, keep in mind that the mother bird may still come back during nesting season to look for it again. So, take the proper precautions to keep the bird away when the time comes.
Why Birds Nests in Gutters Is a Big Problem
The main downside to having birds nest in your gutters is the stoppage of water. A bird’s nest is too thick that it stops the gutter from performing its basic function: running rainwater off to the side and away from your house’s foundation.
As a result, your home becomes susceptible to moisture damage as the water could seep into its walls and interior structure. That, combined with the added weight of the bird, its nest, and its eggs will cause the gutter’s structure to sag over time and perhaps collapse altogether.
Not only that, but birds, as mentioned above, carry pests and diseases with them. This, in turn, poses a health risk for you and your family. Bird mites are just one example to mention.
We hope our guide helped you figure out how to stop birds nesting in gutters as well as pick a solution that’s best suited for your needs and budget.
While birds can be lovely pets, having them clutter around your gutters can eventually damage their structure or cause harmful standing water to overspill onto your garden and foundation.
So make sure that you take care of the bird infestation problem quickly and take the proper measures to prevent them from happening again.
I have a bachelor’s degree in Computer Information Systems and over 10 years of experience working in IT. As a homeowner, I love working on projects around the house, and as a father, I love investigating various ways to keep my family safe (whether or not this involves tech). I’ve also played guitar for almost 20 years and love writing music, although it’s hard to find the time these days.