Hazards from Birds
There are various hazards that birds cause when in close proximity to humans, from health issues to damage and destruction. Understanding these hazards, and identifying the ones you are dealing with, can help you identify the most appropriate bird control measures for your situation.
Bird guano (droppings) is extremely acidic, which can lead to corrosion and damage to the surfaces it touches, especially if it remains there for some time. Tar-based roofing materials and paint finishes are particularly affected.
If birds are nesting on your building’s roof, there is also a risk that droppings will clog up or damage ventilation systems, pipes, or ductwork.
Bird droppings can carry a number of serious diseases that affect humans. Cryptococcosis, Histoplasmosis and Psittacosis are all transmitted through bird droppings, often once the droppings are dried. Cleaning needs to be undertaken extremely carefully to avoid exposure.
Cryptococcosis is a fungal disease caused by inhaling the fungal spores found in pigeon droppings (among other sources). Although healthy adults usually experience mild infections, the young, elderly, or immunocompromised are susceptible to more serious outcomes, including lung infections, meningitis, and skin eruptions.
Histoplasmosis is another fungal infection caused by airborne spores. The majority of cases are not serious, but some result in chronic progressive lung disease, systemic disease, and potentially fatal complications.
Psittacosis is an infection caused by bacteria found in bird droppings. Typically, it presents with flu-like symptoms and fevers. Although most cases are mild, some include respiratory failure and neurological symptoms.
Birds can become aggressive during the mating season, when they’re protecting their eggs, and when they have young chicks. People crossing the path of a nesting bird might find the bird will fly at them to try and scare them off. Seagulls can be aggressive and, due to their size, can cause distress and even injury.
The image of a building facade splattered with bird droppings can be very off-putting to potential customers, giving the impression of a lack of care and hygiene. The aesthetic appearance of your property is important, but bird droppings can damage this.