Pigeons can be a big nuisance around the city. It is estimated that there are 400 million pigeons worldwide, and the population is growing rapidly with the increase of urbanization. It is also estimated that the population of pigeons in New York City exceeds 1 million birds. That is a lot of birds to watch out for, especially since pigeons have no problem coming up to humans to see if they can sneak a bite of bread. Pigeons can be a large annoyance to citizens, and it seems like the problem will never go away. However, there are humane ways to diminish the pigeon problem. By following these easy and gentle steps, you can control the pigeon population near you, and feel no guilt about the methods that you use.

Pigeons always want food. Usually, people encounter pigeons in areas where there is a lot of traffic from people, and those people are usually eating something. Pigeons love scraps of food, whether it is bread, fries, or any leftovers from your lunch. One of the best ways to control pigeons is to stop feeding them, whether it is intentional or not.  If you are out on a family picnic, and you or anyone in your family wants to go feed the birds, it is best not to. Although throwing scraps of bread to birds can be a fun and entertaining experience, it is only encouraging the birds. If pigeons know of an area where they can get food, they will continue to come back to that area to see if they can find more food. If you stop feeding the pigeons, they will stop coming back. Also, always clean up after yourself. Do not leave your uneaten scraps of food behind for a pigeon to come a peck at, because they will frequent that are looking for more food. Always throw away leftovers, and make sure they are out of reach of pigeons.

Flat surfaces are a pigeon’s favorite spot to roost and nest. In order to stop them from doing this, you need to block off any areas that a pigeon might find appealing. You can do this in many humane ways, such as chicken wire, anti-roosting spikes, bird wires, or by attaching wood or metal sheathing at an angle on a flat surface, making it harder for the pigeons to land comfortably. If a pigeon cannot stay in a spot comfortably, they will fly away and try and find a spot where they can. If you have a particularly large area that has a pigeon problem, try using netting to deter the birds to another location. Never use polybutylene gel, it will harm any bird that it comes in contact with. It will also hurt the feathers, making it difficult to fly or to stay waterproofed. Birds can also land on the gel, get stuck, and die slowly. Killing the bird is not the way to control them. Use other humane ways to deter the pigeons from your home or building.

It may be hard to believe, but there is a pigeon birth control called OvoControl. Pigeons are year-round nesters, and just one pair of pigeons can raise a dozen or more birds each year, making the population of these birds spike to unfathomable numbers. If you are in an area where there is no getting rid of the pigeons pecking about for food, like in big city squares, businesses can start putting out OvoControl and see a decrease in the population over time. Sometimes, simply not feeding the pigeons doesn’t work, but with OvoControl, you will not increase the number of pigeons in your area, but rather see it decrease. OvoControl is proven to reduce hatching rates in pigeons, making it safe and humane to use.