Dealing with Crows at Home

As homeowners know all too frequently, crows can be more than a noisy nuisance: they are also carriers of disease, destroy crops and vegetation, and create a visible and unsightly mess. Here are some tips on how to deal with troublesome crows at home.

Install Bird Spikes

Constructed of heavy-duty stainless steel or polycarbonated or recycled plastic, bird spikes are basically barbed wire spikes. These are affixed to a bendable base that can be flat mounted or on a concave or convex surface. They can be installed on an angle, right-side up, or upside down on roofs, ledges, widow sills, fences, poles, or wherever the problem of crows congregating exists or where crows eat.

For Larger Area – Deter Crows With Visual Scare Tactics

To cover larger areas, such as broad expanse of lawns and gardens, don’t rely on fake plastic owls. Crows are very intelligent and quickly adapt. They soon realize that the unmoving owl isn’t a threat. Instead, use more effective visual scare tactics. One such product that works is called Terror Eyes. The stick-mounted product consists basically of eyes with holograms that appear to move and follow the crows. Another visual scare tactic is to use iridescent bird foil, available in 100-foot rolls. Cut foil into strips and attach to fence posts, poles, tree limbs or wood or plastic garden supports. The foil catches sunlight and changes colors. The foil tape also makes a rattling sound as the wind blows it. Both the changing colors and the sound serves to frighten off crows.

Use Sounds to Keep Crows Away

Clapping hands will work to frighten off crows – only as long as the sounds continue, are varied in length and intensity, and occur in different areas. As soon as it’s a repetitive and constant sound, crows will discern the ruse and simply alight where they want. Or, they’ll wait until the clapper (or whistler, person shouting or making loud noises) goes away or inside the home and then flock to the very area where they were not wanted.

Since crows hate unexpected and loud sounds, however, a proven effective technique is to use sound programs. These are programmable electronic devices that play back sounds of birds in distress or of predators in search of food. The devices can be programmed for intermittent times of operation. The most common is effective up to 1 acre, while others work for up to 6 acres. The sounds are played in random order and changing frequencies, so crows can’t get accustomed them. Playing the sounds near places where crows nest is also effective in driving them off.

Stronger Measures – Only with Permits as Allowed by Law

Crows are fearless, intelligent, and they eat almost anything. They are also protected by federal law – the Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918 and amended numerous times since. There are, however, a number of states that designate specific times during which hunting crows may be allowed – with a permit. Contact the local Fish and Wildlife Department before attempting to take down crows by use of firearms. Violators are subject to arrest, fine and/or jail time.