Pigeon poo deluge on the lawn

I am at my wits end because a neighbour two doors down is feeding a flock of twenty or more pigeons who then do massive sloppy poos on my lawn (the poos are 3 inches or more in length). It is disgusting, and I cannot let my child go barefoot on the lawn. Even with shoes there is the risk of stepping on the digusting mess. There can be 30-50 poos every  morning. I can't ask the neighbour to stop feeding the birds as she lives on her own and is elderly and lonely.  The birds seem to be attracted to the white clover on the lawn. Is there any organic way of getting rid of it? I can't dig it out as the lawn is about 40 percent clover at this stage. Any tried-and-tested tips (against clover and against the pigeons)? Many thanks.

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  • philippa smith2philippa smith2 Posts: 8,061

    Have a word with your local environmental health dept.if you don't want to speak to your neighbour directly. 

    I've not known Pigeons to particularly go for clover but like all of us, they do like a bit of green in their diet.Clover is particularly good for bees so it would be a shame to get rid of it from your lawn.

    Unfortunately, there are plenty of people who just indiscriminately feed such rubbish as bread ( not good for birds) but which naturally attract the larger birds and you are left with the resultant messy droppings.

  • DervilaDervila Posts: 19

    Thanks Philippa. It's not that I don't want to speak to the neighbour myself, it is more that she enjoys feeding the pigeons and is lonely after her husband died so it would be sad if that was taken away from her. I don't mind them staying in her house as long as I can stop them pooing on our lawn.

    The problems occurs mainly in July and August when the clover is in bloom. I have seen many threads on American sites saying that pigeons love red clover so I'm assuming they love white clover also. I'm pretty sure the clover is the problem and I definitely need to get rid of it (organically if possible, but cannot dig it out).

    Last edited: 20 July 2016 18:30:17

  • DervilaDervila Posts: 19

    ps, I have lots of other plants for bees.

  • ecokidecokid Posts: 138

    By the sounds of it you just want to stop the mess on your lawn? Have you tried bird scaring devices such as hanging old cd's from nearby  trees or even a scarecrow (you can get friendly looking ones). You could also try the cat scaring water sprinkler that sprays water when its sensors are triggered? I'd look into scaring the birds from your lawn before you do anything drastic.

    Last edited: 20 July 2016 18:47:41

  • DervilaDervila Posts: 19

    Thanks a lot for  taking the time to write back. However, I don't want to scare away ALL the different types of birds in my garden (blackbirds, robins, etc are very welcome!). A sensor sprinkler would end up getting broken by footballs I think, and would be constantly set off by my child running in the lawn. I think I will have to find something effective against white clover (organic or not!).

  • DervilaDervila Posts: 19

    I have found someone with the same problem (pigeons attracted to clover) on this forum, from 2013.

    One poster thought that the pigeons are after the insects that are buzzing round the clover rather than the clover itself. But a poster called Dovefromabove (no doubt an expert on pigeons with a name like that) said they don't eat insects. I quote Dovefromabove here: "....pigeons don't eat insects - they eat greenstuff - grass, cabbages, wheat, barley, peas and field rape etc, and has been said, fruit buds on the trees."

    A predator call app was also suggested: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.bird (gets some good reviews re pigeons, so I may try this, as well as getting rid of the clover).

    The post I got this info from was http://www.gardenersworld.com/forum/problem-solving/darn-pigeons/85047.html

  • michael mpcmichael mpc Posts: 422

    hi dervila     w hen  I lived in stokton on tees  was a couple who feed hundreds and the council put a injunction on them with environmental health the road and paving near there house was a right mess  but it stopped  that should be your way stop it in its tracks      Michael image

  • DervilaDervila Posts: 19

    Thanks very much Michael. I would like to contact environmental health, yes, but there is no evidence of the poo on the road or paving (it's all in my garden!). So the pigeon-feeder would know (or guess) it was me who contacted the council. Anyway, I like the person, whom I know to say hello to in the street, and I don't want to annoy her.

  • michael mpcmichael mpc Posts: 422

    hi again dervila  just re read your mail again and had a thought are they wood pidgeons or just ferralls birds  if woodies  there is lots of easy ways to frighten woodies childrens wind mills  or streemers  and c d s on string or ask a friend who has a cat   michael

  • DervilaDervila Posts: 19

    This scientific article indicates that pigeons like clover (at least wood pigeons do).

    http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v152/n3862/abs/152533c0.html

    And this is from people who shoot pigeons, saying that they they (the shooters) lay in wait for them on clover fields (among other places) : http://forums.pigeonwatch.co.uk/forums/topic/213115-decoying-pigeons-on-clover/

    So clover does seem to be the attraction in our garden.

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