Gutters are hard enough to keep clean as it is-when birds come to nest, it only makes matters worse. Listed below are a variety of ways that you can keep your gutters free from birds nests. These suggestions range from the utilitarian to the bizarre, cheap to costly, so you can find the right method for you.
These handy devices work like so: gutter guards cover the gutters. The guards look like sloped, plastic covers that protect the opening of the gutter. Gutter guards allow rain to roll off the roof and into the gutters. Everything else-leaves, sticks, twigs, debris and birds nests-are blocked from entry into the gutters. Gutter guards are made by a variety of companies and come in a range of prices. For best results, hire a qualified professional to install them for you. This can be costly, but you’ll save time and money in the future as the required maintenance for your gutters drops. If you’re trying to pick the right brand for you, can read more about gutter guards here on the Consumer Reports website.
The natural predators of many birds are other animals like owls and snakes. You can scare the birds away by placing “fright inducers” around the exterior of your home-wooden owls, rubber snakes. If one particular type of bird has been nesting in your gutters, do some research and find out what animal that type of bird is most afraid of.
If you like the idea of scaring away the birds, there’s another product on the market that can turn your house into a source of terror: the Attack Spider woodpecker deterrent. Attack spiders have motion sensors that cause them to drop suddenly when an animal is nearby. Although this product is branded as a woodpecker deterrent, it works for most other types of birds. Hang the attack spider near your gutters, either from an overhanging structure like a branch, or a higher eave. As a bonus, this product is a lot of fun at Halloween and your kids will love them.
Like gutter guards, gutter screens cover the gutters and prevent debris from entering, while allowing in rainwater and runoff from the roof. Gutter screens are a real product that you can buy from the companies that make them, but you can make your own gutter screens for a lesser cost if price is a concern for you. Buy galvanized steel from your local home improvement store and use wires to attach the screens to the open gutters.
Ultrasonic bird repellers are designed to emit a sound that birds don’t like but which humans can’t hear. This not only keeps birds from building nests in your gutters, it keeps birds away period. Depending on how large your property is, you may need more than one of these systems to keep your house protected. If you like birds on your property but not in your gutters, this may not be the best option for you. Ultrasonic systems are not cheap, but may be cheaper than installing gutter guards or screens.
This is a relatively straightforward method. Place traps around your property. Lure birds into the traps. When the birds have been caught, release them back into the wild in a location far, far away. This method requires some amount of maintenance on your part because you’ll have to keep a source of food nearby to lure the birds in, and you’ll also need to check the traps regularly. On the other hand, people like this option because trapping can be a humane and relatively inexpensive solution to the problem.
If you’re hoping to keep the birds out of your gutters for cheap, you may find that using a combination of fear inducers and trapping is the way to go. If you have the money to spend on a more expensive system, gutter guards, screens and ultrasonic devices are likely more effective and require less maintenance. In addition, the gutter guards and screens are especially useful because they do more than keep out bird nests: they keep out everything.