How to deter pigeons: the best combination to effectively prevent pigeons from invading gardens

Pigeons, which look like winged rats, can be somewhat entertaining once in a while, but they can quickly become a threat when they choose your home or garden as their perfect nesting ground. Although pigeons themselves are harmless, they can cause a lot of damage to your property, your car, and can possibly introduce disease-carrying mites or ticks into your home. So what can you do if you don’t want these fun but dirty birds inhabiting your property?

Speaking exclusively to, Jordan Forster, pest control expert at Fantastic Pest Control, said: “Pigeons can be a major nuisance if not taken care of properly. There are a few ways that actually work if you want to deter pigeons.

“Although pigeons are generally not considered pests in gardens, they can destroy young plants and fruit. As well as installing bird repellents, it would help if you made your garden as uncomfortable for them as possible.

Here are five expert-suggested ways to keep pigeons out of your garden.

1. Spray them with a hose

Spray the pigeons with water from a garden hose. Pigeons will not appreciate the strength or concentration of the water intended for them.

For gardeners using this method, it is important to spray the birds as soon as they arrive. If they wait for the pigeons to settle, it will be too late.

READ MORE: A natural repellent could ‘succeed’ in deterring rats from your home

2. Install a scarecrow

Scarecrows have been a proven method of scaring away birds for hundreds of years and, as the name suggests, were originally invented by farmers trying to scare away crows from their agricultural crops.

Today, they are found less often in the fields, but they are still a fairly effective deterrent against pigeons.

The pest control professional said: “There are many bird scaring decoys available, but the most effective ones tend to look like hawk silhouettes, move and make noise.

“As long as the position of the decoy is regularly changed, the pigeons will learn that there is no real danger.” It might even cause birds to perch on it.

READ MORE: ‘Effective and inexpensive’ solutions to prevent rat infestations

3. Keep sheds protected

Jordan said: “You can prevent unwanted visitors from visiting your shed or other garden structures by installing bird netting. The use of netting protects any garden building without harming birds.

Using netting in your garden can be one of the most effective ways to keep pigeons out of your garden. Pigeons will happily consume a wide variety of foods including spring sprouts, vegetables, fruits and berries if the net is not used.

Garden nets are widely available at garden centers and are relatively inexpensive. It comes in different sizes and can easily be cut to size.

4. Use reflective surfaces

The majority of garden birds are easily spooked and reflective surfaces can be an extremely effective deterrent against pigeons that are known to be particularly skittish.

The expert noted that this is “an old gardener’s trick” to keep pigeons away from gardens. He explained: “A lot of times we see this in shiny objects that reflect sunlight, like CDs. Pigeons may temporarily lose sight of and stay away from your patio or garden due to reflective surfaces.

Gardeners can purchase reflective discs designed to hang freely from tree branches and spin gently in the breeze, creating flashes of light as they spin, scaring away pigeons (and most birds). They are humane and very wildlife-friendly, non-toxic and harmless to birds.

However, DIY versions can be created using an old CD or DVD tied to pieces of string and similarly hung from branches.

5. Keep an eye out for bird feeders

Jordan said: “There is a stereotype that pigeons don’t share. Once you fill the bird seed feeders, a bully bird will join the flock. It scares small birds and steals as much food as possible. To keep the peace of the birds, you must keep these intruders at bay. The only way to do this is to keep these intruders away completely.

The expert added: “Pigeon repellents are best combined with preventative methods for maximum and effective results in preventing pigeons from destroying your garden. Don’t let standing water accumulate anywhere in your garden.

“By keeping your property free of seeds, grain and other food scraps, you can keep birds and pigeons away from your home and garden. Keeping your trash can with a closed lid and sweeping your floors regularly will help keep your achieve it.