How to get rid of woodpeckers — Jae’s student essay

How To Get Rid Of Woodpeckers?

Nature, and all the inhabitants of it, are wonderful creatures that deserve respect, awe, and admiration. That is, of course, until nature comes knocking on the side of your house and digging through your wall to build a home or find a meal. A consistent rude awakening at the crack of dawn, only to realize some romped up red-bellied bug-biter is demolishing your hard-earned property is far from ideal. There is no simple answer to the pest problem that is an overeager woodpecker, but with the proper instruction, you will be able to glean what it is you need to do from the woodpeckers themselves.

We must begin by examining what it is that brings these pecker pests to hammer away on hard earned property. There are three leading reasons for this behavior. 

The first being for the sweet, malicious satisfaction the loud ‘thump’ noise brings, proclaiming their territory for all to hear. (smug little sapsuckers, they are) Once their egos have been properly inflated, they could either be looking to make a roost out of your paneling, or looking to turn it into a five-star restaurant of crawly carpenters already inhabiting the space.

The goals of these birds will help us understand how it is we can defeat them, and therefore it is important to be able to identify what it is they want from you. If the holes this winged menace leaves in your property are wide and round, you likely have found a new tenant who by no means plans on paying rent. 

Downey Woodpecker at birdfeeder

If their wooden intrusions are smaller and irregular, the woodpeckers are likely a symptom of another pest problem you may not have been aware of. Like canaries in a coal mine, these peckers, while looking for a snack, have rang the wooden emergency bell with their hungry beaks, proclaiming for all to hear that larvae of various wood-eating bugs have found their way into your domicile.

Female Nuttall's Woodpecker

However, fear not, for this brings us to the solutions to rid yourself of these arrogant bark-beaters once and for all. The first step in shooing away these peckers is to ensure they aren’t getting their suppers from you. If you have a larvae problem, a ring to an exterminator is your best bet (and will likely save you from other troubles down the line). If they still take a liking to your area and continue to believe that it is just as much their space as yours, a 2007 Cornell lab study has found that reflective streamers put up around the area were able to keep the birds away. The shiny coating and rapid movement in the wind was enough of a deterrent to keep these bird-brained thugs away from the test-site homes.

The woodpecker is a wonder in the wild, and a pain in the siding. Keeping your property damage down and your sleep schedule consistent should hopefully be easier now that you are equipped with all you need to know to keep them far from your home.

Author: Jae Churchill Dicks

Southern Oregon University

Student Scholarships

Every year Thrive Pest Control hosts an essay contest and the reward is a 1-year scholarship at a 4-year university in the United States. This blog post is one of those scholarships.