On Pigeons

Picasso painting, seen in 2004 at the Guggenheim Museum, inside the Venetian, Las Vegas.

What do you think of when you see a pigeon?

Is it the beautiful deep blue/gray coloring?

Is it the way they gracefully fly, and then perch lightly on a railing?

Is it the way they tend to pair up and/or congregate?

I think of the cities I’ve visited with great plazas and fountains. The pigeons are all around them, and often, people are feeding them.

Feed them?? Not me! Living in a city, we are now living with pigeons on our balcony, especially when we’ve been away for a couple of months.

You can imagine.

This is the first summer that we’ve had this particular problem, due to no activity on the balcony. With park concerts cancelled, and the coronavirus, we chose to isolate away from the city.

The pigeons nested under our grill, sometime in June, when we were gone. We discovered it, and all the surrounding evidence, on July 3, when we came back for a couple of days. The outdoor furniture was all a mess of droppings and feathers.

Wearing a mask, I used a throw away spoon to scrape up most of it into a trash bag. Then Dan used a putty knife which worked well, although he did comment that perhaps we should hire someone to do this dirty job. Then, a cleaning solution was gently poured over it (due to water runoff toward the sidewalk below, I had to be careful).

Then, rags were laid down on top to soak for awhile, and ultimately used to wipe up. Next, a disinfectant cleaner on tables and chairs, and concrete floor.

Looking somewhat better.

Finally, we could sit out and use the balcony again!

Then, we went back to NW Iowa’s Lake Okoboji, on July 6th.

This time, we put all balcony chairs inside, just in case the pigeons came back.

Balcony chairs, inside.

Well, we returned on October 8th, and yes, the pigeons love our balcony. I’m so glad the chairs were spared.

So, once again, clean up is going on, as well as chasing the birds away every time they land or get near. I was yelling and clapping my hands furiously, which sounded terrible and stung my hands.

Then, I remembered Dad’s trick of pounding 2 blocks of hard wood together to startle the starlings out of our front yard trees in Carroll, IA.

I went to our toy closet to get the Playskool wooden blocks (given to our oldest son, Bryan, in 1973, by his uncle, Michael Neary). I took 2 to use, and it worked great!

I still like our balcony a lot, even with the unwelcome pigeons. Who knows? I may even start painting them.


4 thoughts on “On Pigeons

  1. HA Shirley, I had the same problem in my place of business. What a mess! I finally purchased lengths of plastic spikes that I nailed into the railings. They can’t land then. Good luck but what a nice view. 🙂 Jane


    1. Hi Jane! Nice to hear of your experience with pigeons, ha ha. We used nail spikes on our wooden dock posts in Okoboji to deter the seagulls. Dan’s looking into an ultrasound gadget to use on our balcony here with its metal railings. Take Care!


  2. Certain regions of Italy Pigeons are a delicacy. Of course they are not the wild free spirited Pigeons like we have in Omaha.


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