by Alex A. Kecskes
If you’ve begun to see little holes and cavities in your home’s siding; if your patio cover is starting to look like Swiss cheese; and if you’re awaked in the mornings by the tat-tat-tat of bird beaks, well, you lucky homeowner, you’ve got some serious woodpecker problems.
Chances are, you’re being invaded by any of the 22 species of woodpeckers in North America. Most woodpeckers are attracted to earth-tone or natural-colored stains and paints. And whether it’s the Downey Woodpecker, the Hairy Woodpecker, Pileated Woodpecker, or the Northern Flicker, they'll come a knockin' and do their damage in one way or another.
You really can’t blame the little critters. They’re just foraging for insects under your eaves, siding and patio beams. Problem is, if you don’t implement some effective bird control, the tapping of one woodpecker will draw more birds to your home, and before you know it, you’ll have woodpeckers creating a symphony of destruction. And that means you’re in for some major repairs; something you don’t need in this bad economy.
If you’re thinking of using pellet guns, firecrackers, or bird poisons, forget it. You’ve got kids and pets to protect, and finicky neighbors who will bristle at the thought.
Time to implement a bird control strategy. And one of the most effective and humane ways to deter woodpeckers from your home, patio, or gazebo is Woodpecker Netting.
An ideal physical barrier, woodpecker netting has been specially designed by bird control experts to keep woodpeckers from pecking around your home. This netting works by denying woodpeckers access to wood or stucco siding. After a few unsuccessful tries, the birds will simply get discouraged by the barrier and move on to someone else’s home.
Woodpecker netting consists of a tight 3/4-inch mesh that’s small enough to prevent woodpeckers from getting through. The best netting is made from durable U.V.-protected polypropylene. This netting is lightweight, virtually invisible and easy to handle. It can even be stored and re-used as needed. And it comes with a one-year guarantee.
Woodpecker netting typically comes in a 14 x 100-foot roll. For fast, easy installation, it’s recommended that you get the added hardware, which includes “Poly-Clips. These clips make it easy to hang the net under eaves or other areas. When installing the netting, be sure to position it away from the wall of your home. Secure it to the outer edge of an eave or overhang using Poly Clips, staples, or other attachments. You can let the netting drape down the side of the wall and hang it using weights, or secure it back to the building with self-adhering hooks (you’ll find these at most hardware or lawn and garden centers).
One final bit of advice: If woodpeckers are starting to build nests in your siding, add a woodpecker nesting box. This will give them an alternative to drilling a hole in your siding.