Sparrow warning for food prep sites

The house sparrow is a common pest bird in the UK and an infestation can be difficult to deal with. This means

 that it is essential for businesses to take preventative measures before a flock sets up home. Employing the services of a professional pest control company is the very best way to ensure your buildings are adequately protected.

Problems with House Sparrows

More than just a nuisance, the house sparrow’s nesting habits can bring both disease and destruction to a food and beverage preparation site, causing untold havoc to businesses. The pest birds will frequent food preparation

 and storage areas – such as bakeries, factories and warehouses – often in great number. They build their nests within buildings and may contaminate food and beverage products with faecal matter and nesting materials.

bird pest control

bird pest control

In addition, they will cause damage to packaged goods. Items like flour, cereals, grains and dry foods such as biscuits, are particularly rich pickings for sparrows. They’ll peck away at the packaging to get at the food inside – and when this happens, the stock must be condemned to the waste bin, so as not to supply customers with contaminated goods.

Disease and Destruction

Most people associate furred pests – most notably rats – with disease. However, winged creatures are just as likely to be carriers, and the house sparrow is no exception.

Diseases associated with house sparrows include salmonellosis, tuberculosis, transmissible gastroenteritis, trichomoniasis and more. The birds also carry parasites, such as mites, ticks, fleas and lice – all of which will bring their own health, hygiene and food safety issues with them to your site.

Droppings, of course, will be one of the biggest problems should a sparrow infestation take hold. Faecal matter will contaminate food products and surfaces, create slipping hazards, and attract even more pests such as rodents and insects.

House sparrow nests will often clog up gutters, drains and downspouts in buildings. They are usually made of dried plant materials –grass, straw, weeds, etc. – and feathers, creating serious fire hazards, especially when located in or near electrical equipment such as light fixtures and power lines.

Nests in gutters are also vulnerable to heavy rain, which can drown chicks. These dead birds can then quickly become infested with fly larvae, meaning you will soon have a maggot problem to contend with on top of your ongoing sparrow infestation.

Sparrows have a high reproductive capacity – adult females will average three to five broods a year, with four to seven eggs per brood. In other words, each female will generate between 12 and 35 young per year, meaning a small infestation can quickly become a large one in a relatively short period of time.

Nesting sparrows can also cause damage to roofs, which can lead to additional health and safety hazards. Sparrows will commonly locate their nests under roof tiles, which can then become dislodged. Should these tiles become detached completely, they may of course slip off the roof and come crashing down onto whatever or whoever is beneath them.

Pest Control for Sparrows

When it comes to pest control for house sparrows, prevention is far better than cure.  It is illegal to harm, kill, or remove sparrows and their nests, so businesses need to employ the services of a professional pest control company to ensure food and beverage preparation sites are adequately sparrow-proofed so an infestation doesn’t take hold in the first place.

There are several preventative measures the pest control company may take in order to control sparrows. The first is with netting. Nets are usually made from nylon, and come in a range of colours so they need not be an eyesore. Professional installation is essential if the nets are to function adequately. They need to be kept extremely taut so any invading birds bounce off the net, and do not become entangled. It’s also imperative that no gaps or crevices are left, which small sparrows can pass through.

Anti-perch spikes are also an effective and humane solution, for they simply prevent the birds from landing and nesting in areas that would otherwise be attractive to sparrows. Trained birds of prey can also be used to deter smaller birds like sparrows away from buildings – they will not kill the birds, but rather discourage infestations by simply being present.

Safeguard Pest Control

If you need a strategy to prevent a sparrow infestation at your food and beverage preparation site, get in touch with Safeguard Pest Control today. We have over 30 years’ experience designing bespoke pest control strategies for commercial clients.

Contact us now to arrange a free site survey which will allow us to better advise on the most appropriate sparrow control solution.

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