Bird Control & Waste Management: Landfills are a Disneyland for birds

Bird Control & Waste Management: Landfills are a Disneyland for birds

Our partner Twence processes different kinds of waste flows, from biomass to non-processable waste. Their landfill is a Disneyland for birds as well as perfect hunting grounds for our Robirds. This ongoing project has two goals: to reduce the nuisance caused by different species of gulls and corvids at the landfill and to optimize the flight procedure of the Robird.

Strategy and results:

There are three important reasons why bird control in the waste management sector is essential:

  • Safety: doing your job can be hard when you are surrounded by hungry, raucous, and sometimes aggressive birds.
  • Damage: birds pick up waste and drop it anywhere, damaging buildings and cars.
  • Protection of birds: eating waste can be dangerous and even fatal for birds.

Because landfills provide a continuous supply of food, bird control is a continuous challenge.  When birds are hell-bent on getting the best treats from the landfill, they will quickly become insusceptible to traditional methods like loud noises and flashing lights. If the birds are nesting on or near the landfills, chasing them becomes even more complicated. After performing an ecological assessment, we started flying the Robird early in the year, to prevent the birds from nesting and subsequently obstructing the procreation of a new generation of birds. Birds will always return to their birthplace, so obstructing birds from nesting at the landfills is one of the keys to success.

We were able to create a Pavlov-effect by combining traditional techniques with the use of the peregrine falcon Robird. We often announce the arrival of the Robird with either loud noises or a laser. After a while birds did not wait to see if the Robird was actually coming. The implication of impending doom was enough to permanently relocate the birds.

Because we used the bird’s nature against themselves and kept tweaking the Robird to adjust it to the circumstances, the results were amazing: the number of different kinds of gulls had decreased with 70% to 95% and the number of corvids (crows, ravens, jackdaws) with 50% to 70%.

Lessons learned

It is vital to understand and respect the ecological system of the surroundings. During winter, when natural food sources became scarce, the amount of birds on the landfill increased. The Robird was still able to intimidate the birds, but they were too hungry to completely avoid the landfill. However, the few birds that did take the risk of coming to the landfills portrayed nervous behavior and were easily spooked.

The most important lesson: you can only work with nature, not against it. This project became successful because we started with an extensive ecological assessment, mapped the birds’ behavior and adapted our strategy to the specific location and situation.

Do you want to know how we can help you with long term bird control? Contact us and we will happily discuss all the possibilities.

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