An increasing number of pigeons around the University campus started to cause problems in different areas on the site. The pigeons droppings (known as guano) were starting to pose a significant issue for students, staff and visitors along both major arterial and accessible routes, with the volume of droppings creating both a slip hazard and potential health concerns.
The architecture at the University was an attractive place for the pigeons alongside the regular availability of a food source. Pigeons were subsequently nesting around the more heavily used areas of the campus, with the build-up of guano around window frames and on the ground increasing the risk. The UEA contacted NBC wishing to explore humane methods of bird control and were wanting the advice of experts in the industry to move the pigeons away from these areas.
Falconry control using birds of prey to disperse and move the pigeons away from the area were the ideal solution in this environment. This is a humane method and the falcons and hawks used are seen as predators by the pigeons, displacing them from the area as they see it as no longer safe.
The project started with an intensive month of treatment to displace the pigeons followed by regular visits on site. Through regular recording and data analysis using geo-tagging software (which is an app which records bird numbers to monitor activity) the pigeon numbers are significantly reduced. Through this approach we have been able to see a 70% reduction in pigeon activity across the site after year 1.
“The UEA campus was designed so that virtually no part of campus is more than a few minutes walk from anywhere else. As good as this is for students travelling between classes, it means many features of our distinctive University, such as the elevated walkways and concrete overhangs, are an attractive place for pigeons.
As we endeavour to make our campus accessible to all, it became clear that in a number of key areas the pigeon guano was a serious issue for our students and staff, particularly wheelchair users, and with the listed buildings on site we were restricted in what preventative measures we could take.
Luckily for us, NBC were able to deliver a humane solution which fit the needs of our site. With their consultants they were able to address the problems we faced and sensitivities from students and staff. As a result we have seen a significant reduction in the potential risks posed to our staff, students and visitors.”