Chances are, you don’t live in a birdhouse. You live in a home, carefully constructed and lovingly built into a place of your own over time.
So why would you let birds use your house like a birdhouse? Nests in your vents, roosting on roofs, fluttering around in your attic – these issues may seem small and ignorable at first. Over time though, the consequences can be dire.
Birds carry a long list of diseases like salmonella and bird flu, which can easily spread to humans through their nests or droppings. Some cause relatively only minor sickness, but others can be extremely detrimental to human health or that of your pets.
Not only are bird droppings messy, gross, and ridden with disease, but they present other unique risks as well. Droppings can also accumulate and weigh roofs down, causing them to sag and even break. If for some reason you’re alright with the sight of droppings on your deck, your ignorance is allowing a slip-and-fall risk to develop. Should the problem balloon and get out of hand, you may need to call in a professional for bird dropping removal to avoid risking your health by touching it.
Nesting materials also present a fire hazard. They are typically made of such dry, flammable materials as hay, twigs, leaves, and grass. You may find either active or older nests in your home’s vents, chimney flues, roofs, or attics. A nest that blocks a vent may force carbon monoxide back into a room instead of letting it out, or clog the vent with lint, causing a house fire. Birds can also cause fire if they nest near an electrical unit.
And not only do bird nests house birds, but also parasites. Bird mites are tiny, blood-sucking bugs nearly invisible to the naked eye, most active during the humid months of spring and summer. They’re not exclusive to birds – once they’ve made a meal of the birds in your house, they’ll turn to your pets or even your family for a new source of blood. Though humans don’t serve as a long-term food source for them, their bites are irritating and can spread avian disease.
The best thing you can do for your home is to stop the bird problem long before it can start. Once birds have nested, removal is tricky. In the United States, most birds are protected by the Federal Migratory Bird Act, save for three species: feral pigeons, European starlings, and house sparrows. These birds are invasive species, and most are non-native to the US. This doesn’t mean you can go around moving their nests or harming them, though; local laws and ordinances may get you into trouble if you do.
Further, deterrence methods will do little once birds have established a home base. These are smart, determined creatures, unwilling to reestablish a new home once they’ve settled in. For the sake of your own safety and that of the birds, it is highly recommended that you contact bird control experts to take care of nests for you. From there, the bird experts can guide you to the right methods for preventing any further avian harm to your house.