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How To Get Rid Of Pigeons In A Barn

Anything You Should Know First?

To many animals and birds, farms and barns are the ideal location to rest, chill, and even nest or settle. Destructive pigeons make no exception either. Initially, having a few pigeons around will not necessarily bother you too much. You enjoy the sounds they make. They are relaxing, and you might as well start feeding them. But then, they might settle in the barn. Learning how to get rid of pigeons in a barn is more difficult then, so prevention is key. Not only are pigeons difficult to chase away, but they are also quite clever. Plus, they are never alone – they usually hang out in small flocks. Overlook this problem for too long and damage will inevitably kick in. Droppings are not just smelly, but also acidic and can damage the barn. The good news is that no matter how difficult such a mission might seem, it is not impossible. You do have a few options to get rid of pigeons in animal farm, but you have to do everything by the book and have some patience.

Understanding how pigeons think

Pigeon flocks vary widely. Sometimes, you might end up with a flock of 10 birds only. If you are really unlucky, you might end up with up to 30 birds. One flock will leave plenty of droppings on the barn. Moreover, droppings on plants and crops can kill them. If your plants manage to survive, you will end up with low yields. In the long run, a flock of pigeons will cost you both money and time. Pigeons are relatively large. They are often referred to as large doves, yet they can cause much more destruction. The good news is that unlike seagulls, they are not aggressive and will not attack you for food. With all these, they can still cause lots of damage to buildings and fields. Just like most other birds, pigeons have acidic droppings. Leave these droppings around for too long – whether on the roof or sidings – and chemical reactions will inevitably begin. They will rush the natural rotting process, so they can even alter the structural integrity of the area.

Bird infestation – Why pigeons like barns

In order to understand how to make barns unattractive, you need to know why pigeons love them first. The actual source of food is among the most significant reasons. A lot of people come up with feeders because they like having birds around. The idea is to feed and keep beneficial birds happy. Pigeons are not really in this category. They do not mind feeding and they will most likely come back if they find a good source of food. Apart from food for other birds, there will be plenty of indirect food as well. Grains will also attract pigeons, not to mention stagnant water. It is a source of water and they will not mind it. What makes more sense is to remove such areas or block them. Make your place unwelcoming, and pigeons will generally disappear. A bit of protection may involve using a bird scare. Without one, the barn will be a very inviting place. Pigeons will find it suitable for nesting, but also for roosting. More and more pigeons will join the party, so you are basically invaded. The more birds come over, the more difficult the job will be. Plus, even if you hire a professional, they would rather have to deal with a few birds, rather than dozens of them. Generally speaking, a barn pigeon is there because it likes access to food. It will deal with leftover grains too. As you are in charge of the house, you have full control over it. If you cleaned everything and pigeons still return, there are other options to pay attention to.

How to keep pigeons out of the barn – Avoid killing them

In many countries out there, it is illegal to disturb active nests or kill wild birds. There are more conditions and rules out there – most of them apply to native birds though. In other places, killing pigeons might be legal – different areas have different laws. With all these, killing birds is generally considered animal cruelty, whether they are shot or poisoned. All in all, this is not a solution to your problem. Assuming you can get rid of all the birds, your place is still inviting. Other birds will take over. It is an ongoing cycle that will never end. You are not working on the cause, but on the effect – the cause is still there, and new pigeons will come over. As if all these were not enough, pigeon barn killing means you will end up with loads of dead bodies. You will need to retrieve bodies before getting rid of them – just a bunch of extra chores. Fail to remove the dead birds, and they will start rotting. Not only is the smell impossible to deal with, but you will also attract even more pests – rodents and birds. Plus, spots are dangerous in terms of health and safety. So, if killing birds is not an option when dealing with a pigeon invasion, what else can you actually do? Easy – everything is about discouraging and preventing birds from coming over in the first place.

why pigeons nest in barns

Pigeons animal farm issues

Pigeons are not aggressive at all, which is a good thing. They will not cause any major issues for a few months or years. They become destructive in the long run though. You can scare them, but if they get used to the place, driving them away will be a real challenge. Here are some of the potential issues associated with them. Pigeons will easily affect the crops in the barn. Moreover, their droppings contain various diseases that could be transferred to your livestock. There are limited options out there, meaning bird diseases will not necessarily transfer to livestock that easily, but it is possible – why take a risk? As a direct consequence of all these, your yields will be poor, meaning the barn will face financial losses. Plus, you will need to spend money on potential damage to the structure as well. Then, you should consider the contamination from droppings as well. Water and food sources could be contaminated, meaning you could end up with various health-related problems. Fresh droppings will not kill you, but the acidic nature can be quite harmful. Last, but not least, whether you could the affected yields or the actual damage to the structure, all these things cost money. In other words, pigeons can also bring in financial losses if overlooked for long periods of time. Learning how to get rid of pigeons in a barn is simple, and you have plenty of choices. The good news is that pigeons are easy to scare, but they will get used to whatever you use. Therefore, you have to come up with more solutions and use some variations as well.

How to get pigeons out of a barn – Visual deterrents

Visual deterrents are quite diversified. As a general rule of thumb, opt for something shiny. It will confuse birds and they will find it dangerous. Shiny rods do help, as well as scare tapes. Decoy predators – such as fake owls – will also help. You have to place such things strategically and change their location, or the birds will get used to them. Move them daily or every few days. Then, you have the traditional scarecrow – it has always worked and will always work wonders. Get rid of animal farm pigeons with a few scarecrows. Dress them up in loose clothes, as they will move on windy days. Scare tapes are also classic. They are tied around the crops. Once direct sunlight hits them, they come to reflect the light and blind birds.

get rid of pigeons in barn with noise

How to get rid of pigeons in the barn – Make some noise

A bit of noise will scare birds away. There are a few options out there. Some of them are sonic, meaning you can also hear them – disturbing if you do not want any background noise. Your neighbors may not appreciate them either. Then, you also have ultrasonic noise markers, which are mostly heard by animals only. Desperate for a solution straight away? Get some old pans, clutter them together as they hang, and they will inevitably make some noise. Ultrasonic devices are quite popular these days because they will not disturb people. High-frequency noises will disorient birds and keep them away.

How to keep pigeons out of a building – Scare tactics

Scare tactics are more diversified – as long as they chase pigeons away, you can stick to them. If you have a rifle, shoot it in the air to scare all the birds. Birds will fly away, but they will get back as soon as the place is silent again. Some of them may even get used to such noises, so they may stay there for ages. Another drawback is the fact that shooting a rifle in the air will also scare and stress your barn animals. If you are after free-range livestock, such scare tactics can ruin everything for you.

How do you get rid of pigeons in a barn? Get a cat

Sick and tired of chasing pigeons? Get a few cats. There is a small risk for the cats to catch anything – if they do, you will have to find the dead body and get rid of it. However, the cat is a predator, and pigeons have a natural instinct to avoid it. Have the cat chase pigeons a couple of times, and they will get the message. There is a small risk though – if your cats get used to the pigeons and realize they cannot catch anything, they will give up at some point.

How to get rid of birds in the barn – Prevention is key

Bird proofing a barn is the way to go when trying to prevent birds from reaching it. This aspect is critical and will prevent a lot of headache. When it comes to the interior, make sure you clean everything by the book. Get rid of sources of food and keep everything in sealed containers. Make sure the containers are sturdy, as pigeons can peck through them. If you can, install some screens where pigeons normally enter – cover the open parts of the place. This way, you can let some sunlight inside, but birds will be kept outside. When it comes to the outside, you need to remove and clean all the things that may attract pigeons. Also, use mesh or nets to seal your entryways. Install visual deterrents everywhere and move them around. Spinning roof cowls are great too because they shine, and they move most of the time. Throw in a noise maker too, and birds should never bug you again. Get rid of your bird feeders. Sure, you might be feeding beneficial birds, but such options will affect all birds. You can, however, find closed feeders or feeders with a wide protection around them – they protect food against large birds. If you do want to keep your feeders, keep them away from crops and plants. You can basically divert pigeons somewhere else. Last, but not least, discourage nesting and ensure pigeons find your place unattractive. Come up with spikes on eaves and other similar areas. Pigeons like to land on flat surfaces. Block such parts of your barn, and these birds should not bug you again.


As a short final conclusion, learning how to get rid of pigeons in a barn is not that difficult, yet it might feel overwhelming at first. There are more options out there, and while a bit of customization is mandatory, you will be able to use such tips and tricks for most types of birds out there. Employ the optimal methods and experiment. Something might work for certain pigeons only, but not for others. Therefore, you have to play around with different techniques and figure out what truly works. Whatever it is, avoid killing pigeons because there is simply too much hassle – potentially illegal too – and the problem will not go away.

Written by James Laverne

April 16th 2021

Avatar author James Laverne

Hi, I'm James! With over 25 years of anti-pest experience, I am writing this blog to help you birdproof your home. Get in touch if you have any questions. Happy reading!


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