Where proofing is not a realistic bird control solution, falconry, as part of an integrated control plan, has become one of the most popular and efficient methods available for scaring many species of pest bird from numerous types of locations.
Bird scaring is the dispersal of birds using stimuli that make them feel uncomfortable. The majority of systems are based on sights or sounds connected with bird predators. Scaring is often thought by the uninitiated to be a panacea – a cheap, simple, and totally effective solution to all bird problems. However, this is not at all the case. Birds are intelligent creatures that can rapidly become habituated to initially frightening sights or sounds once they realize that they pose no real threat. Often the most effective scaring techniques are those involving a combination of systems, both visual and audible, that are actively managed on an ongoing basis.
Falconry involves flying captive bred birds of prey in order to scare ‘pest’ birds away from ‘infested’ areas or from areas where birds may be a contamination or serious health hazard e.g. in the food processing, water quality or aviation industries. A variety of different predatory species are used and their suitability for use is very much dependent on the location, nature of the problem, and the species of birds to be scared.
Contracts typically involve an initial extensive clearance period, followed by ongoing routine visits. It is generally best to use falconry as an element of an integrated approach rather than as a stand along system in controlling pest species.