Birds are attracted to areas where food is most abundant and there are plentiful places in which to roost. But if you own a house or property that is plagued by pigeons, gulls and other big birds, then you may want to consider anti-roosting spikes in order to deter them. Not only do feral birds carry diseases, but their excrement can be seriously damaging to the structure of buildings.
What are bird spikes?
Easy to install, inexpensive to purchase and with no maintenance required, anti-roosting spikes are a good D-I-Y pest bird solution. Plus, bird spikes can be installed onto almost any surface including glass, metal, wood, plastic, masonry, brick, steel and even canvas.
Best bird spikes available to buy
In this guide we look at the benefits to using bird spikes, explain how to install them and review our top 4 anti-roosting products, all of which are currently available to buy.
Our best bird spikes 2019 are:
Are bird spikes effective?
Just like us humans, the smaller the bird, the smaller the feet. This why birds such as sparrows, swallows and robins find it much easier to clutch onto baby branches and thin twigs. Larger birds, including pigeons, seagulls and crows, however, have much bigger feet and are built for perching on wider surfaces such as ledges, eaves and parapets.
For this reason, bird spikes are much more effective at targeting larger pest birds that are not adept at precision landings. Smaller birds have been known to tip toe between the angled spikes so we would recommend a multi-faceted approach when targeting tiny fowl.
Are bird spikes humane?
Anti-roosting spikes (providing they have blunted tips), are a legal, safe form of bird deterrent. Made from stainless steel or plastic, the ends are rounded so that the spikes make landing, roosting and nesting uncomfortable for nuisance birds, but do not cause them any harm in any way. They are also considered to be environmentally friendly and safe to use around other animals as they do not release any chemicals or toxins.
Top 5 benefits of using bird spikes
In addition to bird spikes being humane and toxin free, there are a number of other advantages to using anti-roosting spikes over other types of bird deterrents.
- Bird spikes are easy to install and are mostly sold in strips which are measured by the metre. This makes them easy to cut to size and allows you to protect almost every part of your property, from the bottom to the top.
- If you are looking to safeguard a listed building, then bird spikes are the obvious choice, due to the reversibility of the product and the non-invasive nature of the fixing products (silicone gel) used.
- Good quality bird spikes can last for up to 10 years thanks to the tough plastic or stainless-steel material, which is embedded in to a UVA base.
- They do not require any form of maintenance or professional installation, making bird spikes a cost-effective solution.
- Bird spikes are inconspicuous thanks to the material in which they are manufactured. Therefore, they can be matched to suit the surrounding scenery.
Are there different types of bird spikes?
The most common types of bird spikes are made from either stainless steel or polycarbonate plastic. Both materials are incredibly tough yet flexible enough to be attached to a flat or curved surface.
Depending on the property and where they are to be placed, both types of bird spikes come in different lengths and widths and offer a host of different benefits.
Stainless steel bird spikes
The stainless-steel spikes are a lot more discreet than the plastic bird spikes, as when glistening in the sunlight they look almost translucent from all viewpoints. And although stainless steel isn't considered to be waterproof, this material does resist rust well, which means these spikes can remain on the roof for long periods of time. Stainless steel also works well for protecting large surface areas, giving you a lot more coverage for your money.
Plastic bird spikes
Plastic spikes, however, are generally less expensive and slightly stronger than steel spikes. Made from a sturdy polycarbonate material, they can withstand the weight of larger or heavier birds and are both sun and weatherproof. And, when it comes to purchasing plastic spikes; they often come in a selection of colors, allowing you to match them seamlessly so that they blend in with the surrounding environment. Plastic spikes will not interfere with any communication or electrical transmissions as they are non-conductive.
How to install bird spikes
When it comes to purchasing and installing bird spikes, they are readily available online and a D-I-Y novices dream. Bird spikes are mostly sold in strips, which are measured by the metre making them easy to cut to size and snap.
Affixing them is simple too, as long as you adequately prepare the surface area, read the manufacturer’s guide and take safety precautions when up high.
You should take care to clear any nearby branches and guttering beforehand and make sure that the area itself is dry and free from peeling paint, birds droppings or foreign debris.
Bird spikes can be incredibly versatile and can be placed either straight or by following the contours of the building. It is important, however, that you make sure there are no spaces or gaps in between, as small birds may be able to perch and settle. Anti-roosting spikes generally come in packs with silicon glue or clips included, although a caulking gun and screws may be required.
Do bird spikes work on squirrels?
Bird deterrents can be very effective at deterring squirrels when placed around roof and attic access points. It is important to ensure that you get the longer spikes so that squirrels can't attempt to step on, through or between them.
Our best bird spikes for 2019
#1 Defender Plastic Bird Spikes Kit with glue
Best starter pack
If you want to discourage pest birds from using your house as their home, then the Defender Plastic Bird Spikes 50 ft Pack with Glue is all you need to deter them.
Simple, inexpensive yet incredibly effective, these bird spikes will prevent pigeons and other larger winged pests from finding any space to land. Each anti roosting repellent strip is snap-able to size, and the UV stabilized polycarbonate makes them usable throughout the seasons.
A 40-page pigeon deterrent guide is also included in this pack, which includes an in-depth guide on how to install them correctly. Interesting articles, health and safety and current legislations are also covered within this book.
#2 Bird-X Extra Wide Stainless-Steel Bird Spikes
Best bird spikes for larger birds
These Bird-X extra wide stainless-steel spikes with a polycarbonate base are perfect for preventing larger, troublesome birds like cormorants, seagulls, raptors and vultures from roosting or landing long term.
These spikes come in a selection of sizes from 10-50 ft depending on your requirements and come with a 10-year warranty. Although these do not include any silicon glue or screws, they do have small pre-drilled holes at regular intervals in the plastic base for your own use.
#3 Aspectek Stainless Steel Bird Spikes
Best spikes for a variety of surfaces
These stainless-steel bird spikes are durable and long lasting thanks to the heavy-duty stainless-steel spikes and the UV protected polycarbonate based. Easy to install, they come with pre-drilled holes and glue troughs in which to insert the included silicone.
Each unit of spikes covers 1ft length and a width of 5 inches. The spike's flexible base can bend a full 360 degrees, and the strips themselves can effortlessly clip together.
#4 Bird Blinder Stainless Steel Bird Spikes
Best for all weathers
These Bird Blinder stainless steel bird spikes are made from 100% stainless steel so are guaranteed to be corrosion free and fully weather resistant. They are ridged so not as flexible as some other brands, however, these strips are very narrow, at just 1 inch wide, so are great for covering slim ledges and sills with a depth of up to 100 mm.
This pack comes with 10 bird deterrent strips, although you will need your own glue, screws or cables in order to apply.
Anti-roosting bird spikes can reduce pest bird problems if you are trying to humanely deter larger birds from landing or nesting. If your main targets are smaller birds, then you may need to take a multi-faceted approach to control them from making your property their home or landing place.
Unobtrusive on the eye and with no upkeep bird spikes make the perfect deterrent as they can be placed and left for many years to come.