Stop Pigeons Nesting & Sitting in Gutters with Defender® Gutter Spikes

Pigeons and other birds love to sit up high out of harm's way. Imagine you are a bird, looking for a comfy safe place to sit from where you can check out if any potential predators are coming your way. A building offers the nearest thing to where a bird would nest in the wild. Urban sprawl has destroyed many of birds' preferred nesting spots. To a bird, our buildings act as artificial cliff faces often with perfect built-in nesting ledges and recessed holes. Gutters are positioned just down from a rooftop, which offers protection from the elements. The curved shape offers security for nesting and overnight roosting and appears the ideal place to raise young. Not only that, gutters are high enough to spot any good sources of food in the area.

Why is a perching pigeon bad for gutters?

There are many reasons why pigeons should be encouraged to move on from perching in gutters.

  • Firstly pigeons will block gutters with a combination of nesting materials which is generally made up of sticks and leaves. Added to this will be a natural build-up of bird guano and feathers. This debris will clog the gutters and block the down pipes causing an overflow of water. In the long term, water leaking down a building can cause damp issues, foundation problems and unsightly marking and damage to the render and the building fabric. These issues in turn could be detrimental to what the property is worth.

  • A large flock of pigeons or even a build-up of several years worth of nesting debris can eventually cause sagging to the gutters or in worst-case scenarios cause them to fall from the house. A build-up of pigeon droppings is never a good thing, but pigeon guano is known to be acidic. Over time, it can wear away the fabric of the building causing leaks and unsightly marks and staining.

  • Having a build-up of pigeon poo and rotting debris comes with health risks. Pigeon guano is known to be a contributor to several human diseases and can exasperate those susceptible to lung conditions.

  • Birds don’t nest alone, they bring with them a whole army of parasites, particularly bird mites. These little insects often hang around after the birds have flown and will enter the house to feed on us in the absence of their favoured host.

  • Imagine it’s a hot day, the windows are open but the smell wafting is foul! This is caused by rotting feathers, droppings and stagnant water.

  • Birds singing in the garden is often beautiful and relaxing, but birds scrabbling around in gutters often at night is not!

  • A combination of old leaves and debris which has broken down into a mulch, a good supply of rainwater and the best fertiliser (Pigeon guano) is the ideal recipe for plants to grow. We have all seen old buildings with beautiful buddleia growing up over the roof line! Seeds are brought up to the gutter line in the wind or in birds' poo, they germinate and grow undisturbed.

What can I do to move pigeons out of my gutter?

So now you know what can happen if you leave those pigeons alone to perch, don’t panic we have the simple answer for you!

Defender® Gutter Spikes are a quick and simple way to deter birds and pigeons from sitting and perching in your gutters. Essentially a gutter spike is a complete unit that just clips to the side of the gutter – job done!

Here are a few stats about the Defender® Gutter Spike:

Suitable for: Pigeons and Seagulls

Gutter Protection: Any standard half-round or square guttering.

Strip Length: 333 mm (Just over 13 inches)

Base Width at Widest Point: 30 mm (1.1 inches)

Pin Height: 112 mm (4.5 inches)

Outer Pin to Outer Pin Width: 145 (5.7 inches)

Made from: UV Stabilised Polycarbonate

Warranty: UK 15 Year

Manufactured: Devon, UK

Are Defender® Gutter Spikes easy to install?

The integral clip on the Defender® Gutter Spikes slips over the leading edge of the gutter, whether half-round or square guttering. No other tools are required, no glue or any extra fixings! This positions the bird spike strip in the centre of the gutter while leaving a gap underneath to allow for the flow of rainwater. The pins of the spike fan out and act as a visual deterrent to stop pigeons approaching the gutter, but if they are determined to give it a try, the pins make it uncomfortable to land and they simply fly off and find another more accessible perch to sit on.

Defender® spikes are made from a high-performance plastic which means it is long-lasting and UV-stabilised, this is why it comes with a 15-year warranty. No one wants to keep replacing a product over the years, especially when it is often installed in high inaccessible areas.

The beauty of having integral clips is that if you need to remove them for gutter cleaning, repairs to the roof or redecoration, they just lift off and when the work is done, they clip right back on again. Perfect! They even have grooves along the base so to finish a length of guttering exactly, just snap with your fingers, reposition the clip and pop it on the end of the gutter. If you would like to see a more in-depth install guide take a look at the dedicated Defender® Gutter Spikes Install page. You will be amazed at how easy it is. The only obstacle is reaching the gutters in the first place, so please be careful and make sure you can use ladders and access equipment safely. If in doubt, ask a professional.

My pigeon has babies in its nest, what should I do?

If you can hear the friendly chirp of young bird babies, you are unable to do anything about the nest until the young have fledged. This means you must wait until they abandon the nest and the young have flown. The whole process typically takes about a month. This is the law under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 (Chapter 69) and includes destroying or removing the unhatched eggs of an active nest.

Can I clip Defender® Gutter Spikes on top of the nest debris in the gutter?

Ideally, clean out the gutters before installing the bird spikes to ensure water flows in the gutter as it was designed. Once the nest has been abandoned you can clear and clean the gutters to your heart's content! Again, be careful with access and make sure you can competently use a ladder if needed.

It is advisable to wear protective gear, such as gloves, goggles, masks and old clothes or overalls. The process is simple. Just scoop out all the debris, perhaps spray down with a suitable disinfectant, we would always recommend our Germ Clear™ Bird Droppings Disinfectant Spray and wash some water along the gutter to ensure there are no obstacles left!

Is there any maintenance to do once Defender® Gutter Spikes are installed?

Once installed, Defender® Gutter Spikes will last for years so all that is left is to sit back and pour yourself a lovely cup of tea or a refreshing Gin and Tonic!

If you need any more info or help on how Defender® Gutter Spikes work do give us a call on 01626 835055 or drop us an email at We also have a great recipe for Gin and Tonic if you need a bit of inspiration!

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