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Birds Nesting In Roof Eaves

A common question we are asked at Kidderminster Roofing Contracts ltd, is how to stop birds nesting in roof eaves on a house. Customers often complain about noisy birds in their roof eaves and ask if they can remove the nests.

The fact is that it is illegal to remove nesting birds once they have settled, however there are ways to prevent birds nesting in roof eaves the following year, provided the correct work is done during the months that birds are no longer nesting.

We aim to explore why birds may nest in your roof eave as well as explore different ways your might prevent birds from nesting in your roof eaves in the future.


Why do birds nest in roof eaves

According to the RSPB rooftops are vital sanctuaries for a lot of birds due to the loss of a lot of natural nest sites.

Birds that commonly nest on rooftops include:

  • House Sparrows.
  • Starlings.
  • Swifts.
  • Swallows.
  • Blue tits/Great Tits.
  • Jackdaws.


Why nests cannot be disturbed or removed

It is illegal to disturb or remove nesting birds from roof eaves once they have settled under the Wildlife & Countryside Act 1981. This includes removing or blocking a nest’s access. Nests must be left with access until the young have had chance to develop and leave the nest.

The reason for this is conservation. The RSPB have identified many of these rooftop nesting birds are in decline. Swifts have declined with Starlings and House Sparrows now red listed, and House Martins and Swallows now amber listed.


When will I be able to have work done on my roof?

If you require work to be done on your roof that would risk disturbing a bird’s nest, you will have to wait to have the work done in the winter months when birds are no longer nesting (ideally between October and February).

This may be frustrating for both yourself and the client, however legally it is the correct thing to do.


What if I don’t have a choice?

You should always avoid roofing project if you are aware of birds nesting in a roof, however often, bird nests go undetected until major roofing projects or renovation projects begin.

If this happens and the roof cannot go untouched until the young have left the nest, one option recommended by the RSPB is to make an artificial nest box for Starlings or Sparrows by cutting a four-litre ice cream tub.

See the RSPB website for advice on building an artificial nest box.


Ways to discourage birds nesting in roof eaves

There are many recommendations you can help prevent birds nesting in your roof eaves in the future, such as:

  • Keeping on top of roof maintenance, ensuring to have your roof checked each winter by a professional roofer, (between October and February), ensuring to clean out and seal any holes or gaps as appropriate, to reduce the risk of birds entering to nest or becoming trapped.
  • Putting out bird houses, providing alternative nesting spaces for birds. By placing bird houses around your garden, you can create safe spaces for birds to nest year after year.


Get in the professional
Need professional advice to help prevent birds nesting in your roof? Here at Kidderminster Roofing Contracts ltd, we can provide a free no obligation quotation for any roof maintenance, repair or re-roof request. Contact us today to see how we can help with you!
Tel: 01562 748270
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