How to stop housemartins nesting below roof

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in In My Home (includes DIY) MoneySaving
59 replies 108.9K views
emmiemacemmiemac Forumite
247 Posts
Just wondered if anyone had any idea how to prevent housemartins nesting on your buliding. They built one last year just below our roof right above where we have our bench to sit out on (the only place we can put it), and the droppings were awful. This is driving my husband crazy so please help. They look like they're wanting to bulid one in the same place again and just wondered what might deter them.
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Replies

  • SUN_ANGELSUN_ANGEL Forumite
    285 Posts
    Friends of ours in Yorkshire pin plastic carrier bags in the corners of their windows and eaves and the flapping noise they make seems to deter the birds somewhat. Not a very pretty sight have a Tesco or M&S bag decorating the house but it certainly saves all the mess.
  • tranmereroverstranmererovers Forumite
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    My dad has house martins nesting under his eaves every year for the past 35 years!! In the beginning we used to try and knock them down but they built them straight back up again. We tried carrier bags to no avail. In the end dad built an extension (bit extreme I know but honest it wasn't just for the housemartins!) Now the droppings fall on the extension roof. Only problem we have now is cats on the roof trying to get to the nests!
    It's easier to get forgiveness than to ask permission ;)
  • Just prod them with a stick and they will drop off :D

    TheHousemartins.gif

    The Housmartins. :rolleyes:
  • ChicJoChicJo Forumite
    40 Posts
    We use chicken wire inbetween the roof and the top of the wall to stop the birdies getting into the eaves - definitely works.
  • Lucie_2Lucie_2 Forumite
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    As soon as the nest starts to appear, get the hose pipe or jet wash out & knock it down. Sounds cruel, but it worked for us a couple of years ago & they never came back.
    Try no to do it if the nest is established just in case there are eggs in there; but if you do it straight away they won't get chance to lay any eggs.
  • WigWig Forumite
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    House martins are fully protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, which makes it an offence to kill, injure or take an adult bird, or to take, damage or destroy the eggs, young or nest of a house martin whilst it is being built or in use. The Act allows for fines of up to £5,000 for every bird, egg or nest destroyed, or even custodial sentences. If maintenance work that would affect either a natural or artificial house martin nest needs to be carried out, this should be scheduled for the autumn, winter or early spring when the birds are not in residence. At this time of the year one can remove the nests to carry out the work. Make sure that you replace any artificial nests to exactly the same spot where they came from house martins are very particular about the exact location of their nest.
  • WigWig Forumite
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    emmiemac wrote:
    Just wondered if anyone had any idea how to prevent housemartins nesting on your buliding. They built one last year just below our roof right above where we have our bench to sit out on (the only place we can put it), and the droppings were awful. This is driving my husband crazy so please help. They look like they're wanting to bulid one in the same place again and just wondered what might deter them.


    As I just quoted above if they are actively building or using a nest it is illegal to disturb them. In future if you want to do something, say in October, you can go up a ladde knock the nest off (if empty) and fasten something to the wall in this area, something like a length of drain pipe (horizontally under the eaves), would stop them from building next year.
  • paullwill8paullwill8 Forumite
    488 Posts
    This definately works!
    I had this for three years, then I secured a "cuddly toy cat" to the area where they would nest.
    Never been back since.
    What goes around - comes around
    give lots and you will always recieve lots
  • devon-gnomedevon-gnome Forumite
    279 Posts
    100 Posts
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    When the house martins were abroad (winter time), I got a builder to remove the nests and put a net-covered frame up. He fixed it from the guttering to about a foot below it. This was 4 years ago and they've not been back since. :)
  • NileNile Forumite, Board Guide
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    Hello emmiemac

    Some of the suggestions already posted will be either expensive or involve getting ladders out.

    Why not place a plastic sheet over your bench, to be removed only when you want to sit on the bench? This option won't cost you much and will allow your birds to rear their young. The wildlife and emmiemac family can live in harmony.:D

    Let us know your decision

    Kind Regards

    Nile
    Hi, I'm the Board Guide on the In my home (includes DIY) and the I wanna buy-it or do-it boards which means I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. However, do remember that Board Guides don't read every post. If you spot an inappropriate or illegal post then please report it to [email protected]. It is not part of my role to deal with reportable posts. Any views are mine and are not the official line of moneysavingexpert.com.

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