Pest birds nesting on your roof can do a lot of damage.
Unless you live in a concrete bunker, the average roof is vulnerable to all types of birds. That's because most roofs offer birds an attractive place to nest and roost. Roofs also provide a safe perch from which to look for worms. In fact, many roofs offer birds a smorgasbord of insect snacks. When birds dig into your roof for insects, their beaks peck away at shingles and rafters. All this digging creates increasingly wider gaps where water can seep in during rain.
Even if you have a stone or metal tile roof, birds often build their nests under these tiles, which can cause damage and leaks. The acids in bird waste can
destroy tar-based roofing materials and damage roof-mounted air conditioning equipment, attic ventilation turbines, skylights, solar panels, and solar water heaters. Without effective bird proofing measures, roofs are vulnerable to pest birds and the problems they create.
One highly regarded bird-proofing device is the tried and true bird spike. These spiked strips are blunted and safe for birds and pets; yet they're scientifically designed to deny birds a place to land. Bird spikes come in rigid U.V.-resistant unbreakable poly carbonate or high strength, durable stainless steel. Marine grade stainless steel spikes will last longer. And crush-proof, non-reflective spikes with a metal finish will blend in nicely on most types of roofs. You can even get bird spikes in several colors--including crystal clear, brick red, light grey, brown, black and tan. Plastic spikes can be used around dish antennas, since they don't interfere with TV signals.
When it comes to birds, there may be more than just avian flu to be worried about....
There are over 60 other diseases that birds and their droppings can carry. The problem is especially worrisome in populated areas, as many of them are airborne and can be transferred to humans just by being around droppings.
Examples of transmissible bird diseases associated with pigeons, geese, starling and house sparrows:
Histoplasmosis- is a respiratory disease that can be fatal. It results form a fungus growning in dried bird droppings.
Candidiasis- is a yeast or fungus infection spread by pigeons. The disease affects the skin, mouth, and respiratory system.
Cryptococcosis- is caused by yeast found in the intestinal tract of pigeons and starlings. The illness often begins as a pulmonary disease and may later affect the central nervous system. Since attics, cupolas, ledges, schools, offices, warehouses, etc. are typical roosting and nesting sites, the fungus is apt to be found in these areas.
Salmonellosis- often occurs as "food poisoning" and can be traced to pigeons, starlings, and sparrows. This bacteria is found in bird droppings; dust from droppings can be sucked through ventilators and air conditioners, contaminating food and cooking surfaces.
E.coli- cattle carry E. coli 0157:H7. When birds peck on cow manure, the E. coli goes right through the birds and the bird droppings can land on or in a food or water supply.
Carcasses, nesting material, and poop inside air ducts.
This is buildup of bird poop inside the duct work.
Besides being direct carriers of disease, nuisance birds are frequently associated with over 50 kinds of ectoparasites, which can work their way throughout structures to infest and bite humans. About two-thirds of these pests may be detrimental to the general health and well-being of humans and domestic animals. The rest are considered nuisance or incidental pests.
A few examples of ectoparasites include:
Bed bugs- may consume up to five times their own weight in blood drawn from hosts which include humans and some domestic animals. Pigeons, starlings, and house sparrows are known to carry bed bugs.
Chicken mites- are known carriers of encephalitis and may also cause fowl mite dermatitis. While they subsist on blood drawn from a variety of birds, they may also attack humans. They have been associated with pigeons, starlings and sparrows.
Yellow mealworms- perhaps the most common beetle parasites of people in the USA, lives in pigeons nests. It is found in grain products, often winding up in breakfast cereals, and may cause intestinal canthariasis.
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