Protecting your home with pest bird control

Birds can add to the natural feel of a home and garden, but some may cause damage to your home if allowed to nest, roost or look for food. Australian native species such as cockatoos can cause immense damage to wooden structures of a home like decks, railings and frames. Using netting, spikes and other preventative measures can ensure that your home remains undamaged by birds.

Bird damage to homes

Pigeons, starlings and seagulls can cause damage to homes with their droppings. Rainwater tanks can also become contaminated via droppings on the roof. Starlings along with several other species such as blackbirds and swallows also love to nest in the eaves of your roof. This is not only unhygienic but can also cause mess and fouling from droppings.

Cockatoos, corellas and galahs can cause immense structural damage to your home simply by ripping the wood off in their powerful beaks. Many Australian families have put food and seeds out for these native birds, only to find that when they are away on holidays and no food is present that the birds start attacking the wood. It should be noted that because these are native birds they are protected. You should not attempt to trap, harm or kill them but should seek advice from your local council on how to control the problem.

Proofing against bird invasion

Following some simple guidelines should ensure that your home is not invaded by pest birds.

  • Close up the entry points to your home and gaps in your roof. Under roof tiles, the roof valley, drain pipes, chimneys and vents are all vulnerable to bird entry.
  • Bird wire and netting, pop riveting tin or aluminium sheets may be used to close gaps and secure any inviting entry points
  • Wire strung at about 10 – 20 cms above roosting can deter birds from sitting in usual spots
  • Bird spikes or other sharp objects can be attached to landing points to deter landing
  • Powders and sprays are available to guard against bird lice
  • Bird scarers can include visual scarers such as cut out cats, eyes, kites, balloons and wind propelled lightweight spinners. Objects that reflect sunlight scare birds that may be unfamiliar with the area. But birds quickly become acclimatized to such scarers when they realise that the objects are not alive.

Other bird control methods

There are other chemical deterrents, baiting and trapping methods which are used as part of bird pest control. Consulting a bird control professional is necessary as baiting and trapping needs to be carried out within certain legal guidelines and licences.

Bird problems in the home

Birds can cause damage to your home, may spread diseases such as bird mites and can foul your home and water supply. Easy preventative measures such as closing entry points, making roosting and landing areas unattractive and repelling birds with scarers and reflective items will safeguard your home without causing the birds any harm. By protecting your home you can enjoy it and the wildlife, knowing that each is safe from the other.

Types Of Ant Infestations

One of the most common pest problems for many homes in Australia is an ant infestation. We’ve all experienced coming home after a day out or a holiday and seeing a kitchen covered with ants. When the ant infestation isn’t as serious some people just leave a few ants wandering around their home. But this situation can escalate to dire proportions very quickly.

While ants are industrious and a useful part of the world’s ecosystem, you probably don’t want to share your home with them. Detecting the signs of an infestation is not difficult, and dealing with the problem effectively can be easier than dealing with many other species of insect pests.

Types of ant

There are three main types of insect which may be referred to as an ant in the context of pest infestations in the home.

The first type of ant and also the most benign, is the black ant species which forms lines across floors, benchtops, into cupboards and across other surfaces. These ants have usually discovered unsealed food sources such as bread, lollies or pet food. These trails are easily spotted and the ants often produce a distinctive sour acidic odour – especially when you squash them.

The second type are stinging ants such as fire ants or bull ants, and these should be treated with caution and eradicated by a professional pest control expert if found in your home. These ants can cause painful stings and can be dangerous especially to small children.

The third type of ant infestation are termites, or ‘white ants’, which are more concerning for the homeowner and can be devastating in their consequences. ‘White ants’ are the larvae of termites, and they eat wood, boring holes in the floors, walls and more commonly wooden foundations of your home.

Detecting an ant infestation

Black worker ants are easy to see. They are small, each only a few millimetres long, and form a pheromone trail to a food source. They usually live and work outside the home and when they come inside it is invariably for food.

Termites are trickier to detect before they cause damage and often considerable damage. If building a new home, consider preventative measures such as using concrete or treated foundations. Other materials are available to repel or keep termites out of timber areas. Your home should be regularly inspected by a qualified pest control professional. Most home building insurance policies will not cover against termite damage, so keeping termites at bay is vital in protecting what may be your largest asset.

Ant pest control: Treating an infestation

  • Termites should be dealt with by a pest control professional immediately
  • Black ant trails can be removed by scrubbing the entry points with soap and water. If the black ants persistently reappear in the home, the services of a pest controller may be the best option for eradication
  • Avoid enticing ants into your home by keeping all food stored, benchtops clean and pet food only offered at feeding times. Ants love open bowls of dry pet food
  • Bait may be laid for ants, in gel, liquid or solid form. Liquid forms are generally taken more easily. These are toxic, so take appropriate care especially with pets and small children around
  • Some natural forms of ant control include laying out cucumber peels or mint tea bags as these repel ants, setting cayenne pepper, citrus oil or cinnamon at entry points, and spraying ants with soapy water

Ant infestation in the home

While an infestation of ants may not be the worst pest problem for most houses, the problems can escalate quickly to the point where they are a very unpleasant nuisance. Ensuring that there is no food to attract them, and taking a few simple measures upon discovering them, can deal very effectively with this problem. If you have ongoing issues with black ants, consider getting quotes from pest control companies in your area, who will soon be able to put an end to your troubles. Termites should always be dealt with by professional pest controllers, and should be checked for via entry points to the home’s foundations regularly.