We love our feathered friends from afar, but the diverse community of birds in North Carolina can sometimes lead to unexpected and unwanted visitors in our homes. By staying calm, using some simple strategies, and seeking professional help when needed, you can safely help them find their way back to the great outdoors where they belong.
At A-1 Pest Control, we have been helping North Carolina homeowners remove these winged guests, and prevent birds from getting into their homes into the first place. Here, we’ll explore the types of birds most commonly found in homes, how to spot the signs, and what steps you can take to keep them out.
Birds in North Carolina
North Carolina is home to hundreds of species of bird, but there are a select few who seem to make a habit out of turning our homes into their habitats.
Starlings are medium-sized, highly adaptable birds known for their stunning iridescent black plumage with speckles and spots. Native to Europe, Asia, and North Africa, they are excellent mimics and can imitate a wide range of sounds, from that of other bird species to mechanical noises.
Starlings are often seen in large flocks, especially during migration and in urban areas, where they forage for a variety of foods, including insects, fruits, and human scraps. Unfortunately, these pest birds are known to drive native birds away and they damage property and introduce health risks with their droppings.
With over 140 species worldwide, different types of sparrows exhibit various plumage colors and patterns, often blending into their surroundings. In North Carolina, the most common species of sparrow is the house sparrow, which measures about 6 ¼ inches in length from the tip of its bill to the top of its tail.
Males and females differ in appearance, the male’s topside is chestnut brown in color, and its underside is a lighter grayish tan color. The male’s throat and upper breast is black, while their head is gray in color with whitish cheeks, and they have a single white wing bar. The female house sparrow is much less impressive looking than the male; sporting a simple tan color with dark reddish-brown wings.
These adaptable birds primarily feed on seeds, insects, and small invertebrates, making them valuable for pest control in agricultural settings. Sparrows are also known for their communal nesting habits and their simple, cup-shaped nests, which they often build in sheltered locations.
Known for their graceful, aerobatic flight patterns, swallows are easily recognizable by their slender bodies, long wings, and forked tails. Swallows are primarily insectivorous, catching insects in mid-air with their agile flight skills.
They are migratory birds, with many species undertaking long-distance journeys between their breeding and wintering grounds. Swallows often build cup-shaped nests made of mud, and attach them to man-made structures. The barn swallow, which can be recognized by their cobalt blue body, is the most commonly spotted in North Carolina.
Woodpeckers, as their name suggests, are known for their signature strong bills, which are designed for drilling into trees in search of insects and sap. Their stiff tail feathers enable them to balance and brace against tree trunks while hammering away. Their habit of drilling into structures causes damage to wood including siding and window frames. What’s more, the holes these pest birds make are often invaded by carpenter bees and other insects.
Woodpeckers also use their bills to make their drumming call, used for communication and territory marking. These birds also have specialized shock-absorbing structures in their skulls, protecting their brains from the intense impact of their drilling.
Woodpeckers play an essential role in forest ecosystems by controlling insect populations and creating nesting cavities used by other wildlife.
Though it is considered the number one pest bird in most areas, pigeons are not as large of a problem as other pest birds in our part of North Carolina. Adult pigeons grow to between 11 and 12 ½ inches in length and weigh up to about 13 ounces. They have a light gray body and a darker colored head, shoulders, and breast. Pigeons also have two distinctive dark bars going across their wings and another dark bar going across their tail. Their beak is a grayish-pink color. Pigeons prefer to feed on seeds but will basically eat anything that they come across. They leave their nests to feed in the morning and late afternoon and then return to their nests and stay in them throughout the night. Pigeons can be found living in both urban and rural environments- happily feeding on scraps of food from sidewalks or on seeds found in fields.
The Northern Cardinal is a well-loved and easily recognizable bird species in North America, and the official state bird of North Carolina. Males are known for their striking, brilliant red plumage and distinctive crests, while females exhibit a more subdued combination of gray and red.
These birds are common in gardens, woodlands, and suburban areas, where their melodious songs and vibrant colors make them a delightful sight.
Northern Cardinals are non-migratory, which means they can be observed year-round in their habitats. They primarily feed on seeds and fruits, making them frequent visitors to bird feeders.
The Eastern bluebird is easily recognizable by its stunning sky-blue plumage, rusty-orange breast, and white belly.
These cavity-nesting birds are often found in open fields, meadows, and parklands, where they hunt for insects, small fruits, and berries. However, they may mistake man-made structures like homes or barns as suitable alternatives to natural cavities—it’s not unheard of to find a nest in an attic of a home.
Our Pest Library
How Do Birds Get into Houses
Birds may accidentally find their way into your home for various reasons.
FAQ Related to Birds
Are birds dangerous?
Pest birds are dangerous for many different reasons. Their droppings can carry many diseases and bacteria that can make people ill including salmonella, toxoplasmosis, and histoplasmosis- a fungal disease mostly affects the lungs and can be life-threatening if not treated properly. In addition to diseases that they carry and transmit, pest birds are hosts to many parasites (lice, fleas, ticks, mites). Along with making people ill, accumulated pest bird droppings can lead to “slip and fall” accidents and their feces also erode signage and damage other building surfaces. Bird nests, when constructed on structures, can result in equipment and machinery damage or even failure.
How do you get rid of birds?
It is very difficult to prevent pest birds from roosting or nesting on your structure, and once they’ve established themselves, it can be even harder to get rid of them. For professional bird control in Lenoir, Blowing Rock or elsewhere in Western NC and the Piedmont region, A-1 Pest Control is the ideal solution. Using industry-leading bird control techniques and practices, you can count on our locally owned and operated company to safeguard people and protect your structure from damages caused by pest birds.
How do you keep pest birds away?
To keep starlings and other pest birds away from your home or business, you must remove food and water sources that attract them. Wherever possible, you should also seal holes that would allow them to nest inside. The best way to prevent pest birds is to consult with professionals who have the tools and knowledge to keep these nuisance and destructive pests away. To schedule an inspection for your pest bird problem, contact A-1 Pest Control today.
Signs that You Might Have a Bird Nesting in Your Home
Recognizing the signs of a bird nest in your home is important, as it allows you to take appropriate action while respecting wildlife. Here are some common signs that you might have a bird nest in your home:
About A-1 Pest Control
If you suspect that birds have nested in your home, it’s essential to act responsibly and avoid disturbing them, especially if they are protected species. Consult with local wildlife authorities or pest control professionals like those at A-1 Pest Control to determine the best course of action for safely removing the nest or ensuring it doesn’t become a recurring problem.
If you’re seeking pest control services in North Carolina, A-1 Pest Services is your trusted source for all your bird prevention and removal needs. As a family-owned and operated company, we have been dedicated to serving our local community for over five decades, offering comprehensive pest control solutions that encompass everything from ticks and termites to a wide range of pests. Our long-standing commitment to delivering high-quality services and ongoing education has consistently distinguished us, and we take pride in assisting our neighbors in creating healthier, happier homes.
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