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How to Keep Birds Off Your Roof: 10 Humane Ways

white doves in the roof

If you have a roof, birds are probably going to perch on it. It’s a high structure, and birds prefer to perch somewhere high. However, there are also plenty of reasons you may not want birds to be on your roof. Sadly, without taking some precautions, there are very few ways that you can successfully keep them off your roof.

Luckily, there are some steps you can take to keep the birds off of your roof. You’ll typically need to set these things up in advance, so plan accordingly.

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The 10 Humane Ways to Keep Birds Off Your Roof

1. Place Predatory Decoys on Your Roof

owl decoy in the garden
Image Credit: Mark R Coons, Shutterstock

Firstly, you can use owl, raven, and falcon decoys to make songbirds believe that there is a predator on your roof. Typically, this will make them steer clear of your roof for some time. However, birds are pretty smart, and they typically figure out the decoys eventually.

Usually, it is recommended that you move the decoy around but since the decoy will be on your roof, this isn’t always very practical.

2. Play Predatory Sounds

Another way to keep birds away is to play the sounds of predatory animals. Of course, these need to be the correct predatory animals. You preferably want to choose predators that the birds in your area would be familiar with.

However, again, birds may figure this out eventually. After hearing the sounds many times and never being attacked, the birds may figure out that the sounds don’t actually mean that there is a predator nearby.

3. Use Ultrasonic Frequencies

sound repeller in the garden
Image Credit; Vladimir Shulikovskiy, Shutterstock

Birds have a different hearing range than we do. While ultrasonic frequencies can be troublesome and annoying for birds, we cannot hear them. Therefore, they can be a good option. The birds will steer clear of the area because they won’t like the noise. However, you shouldn’t be affected.

You can also purchase options that are specifically designed for birds only. These frequencies shouldn’t bother dogs, cats, or other animals.

4. Install Electric Pads

If birds tend to perch in a particular area, you can install electrical strips along that area. Be sure to get avian-specific pads, as these are extremely low voltage, which prevents them from actually harming the birds. While the bird won’t want to sit on the pad, the voltage isn’t high enough to actually harm the bird.

You can purchase these electric pads at many pest control stores.

5. Install Bird Spikes

man installing bird spikes
Image Credit; Chemari, Shutterstock

Despite the scary-sounding name, bird spikes are simply long, thin rods that don’t allow the bird to land in that area. Therefore, they can’t actually harm the bird but they will remove possible perching locations.

As you’d imagine, these spikes only work where you place them so if you’re trying to protect a specific area, they may be helpful. However, covering your whole roof in them isn’t particularly viable.

6. Use a Bird Spider

Once again, this deterrent has a very scary name, but it is a completely harmless device that is made of many floppy rods. Because the device looks like a spider, it is typically called a bird spider. The rods are extremely thin and spread along a wide area, making it impossible for birds to land in those locations.

Bird spiders are typically used for boating so you may find them at marine storefronts. However, there is no reason you can’t use them on your roof or similar areas, as well.

7. Get a Perch Repellant Gel

woman painting metal roof
Image Credit: Stanislaw Mikulski, Shutterstock

If you’re worried about how your roof will look, we recommend choosing a perch repellant gel. This gel simply makes the shingles feel sticky, which most birds won’t choose to perch on for very long. In this way, it can actually be quite effective at keeping birds away without making your roof look any different.

You will need to reapply this gel every 6–8 months. Plus, if you cover your whole roof in it, it can get expensive.

8. Lay a Net

You can purchase bird netting that is made to cover a large area. These nets don’t allow the bird to get a solid footing on your roof. Therefore, they are a great option for large flocks of birds. However, they aren’t a great option for small areas.

These nets can be expensive but they are usually the most cost-effective for the larger areas.

9. Remove Nesting Areas

birds nest in the roof
Image Credit: Piqsels

If there are nesting areas on the roof, there are likely few things that will keep the bird away. Therefore, you will need to clear off any nesting areas the birds may be visiting. While birds usually don’t reuse bird nests every year, some different species will. Therefore, it is in your best interest to remove all the nests you find.

10. Remove Food

If there is food on your roof, the birds may continue to visit even if you practice some of the deterrent strategies we outlined above. Be sure to remove any crumbs and open trashcans that may encourage birds to visit.

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There are many ways to keep birds off of your roof. However, many of these methods are specifically for smaller areas. Therefore, if you have lots of perching areas on your roof, it will get harder and harder to keep the birds away.

Luckily, you can use things like bird nets over longer periods, though your house may look a bit strange with a net over the top of it.

You can also use repellent gel, which is specifically designed to make your roof sticky. Therefore, birds won’t want to perch on it. However, this requires regular replacement every few months.

Featured Image Credit: Piqsels


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