Street pigeons are often associated as the most common birds found in populated areas, walking about cities or nesting on urban buildings. They can typically be found landing on or nesting in telephone wires, building ledges and rooftops. Unlike common pigeons, however, band tail pigeons in California are commonly found in foothill areas and often land on and nest in trees. Although these two types of pigeons differ in appearance and habitat, they are unfortunately being connected as a result of a deadly, infectious parasite that’s spreading across the Pacific Coast.
The band tail pigeon is California’s only native pigeon. According to an article from CBS San Francisco, environmental scientists at the California Department of Fish and Wildlife have identified a parasite that is killing off band tail pigeons mostly between San Francisco and San Diego. This parasite is known as avian trichomoniasis, and the alleged carrier of this parasite is none other than the common pigeon population.
Environmental scientists believe that street pigeons are the main source for carrying and spreading this parasite. This organism takes place in the host bird and prohibits it from eating as it lives in their throat and mouth area.
Dr. Jennifer Scarlet, from the San Francisco SPCA, was interviewed in the CBS coverage, saying that the parasite gets transmitted from other infected birds congregating around non-infected band tail pigeons, commonly near bird feeders or shared watering holes. To avoid transmission to other pigeons – in addition to raptors and hawks – homeowners are being advised to clean their birdfeeders or put them away for a while to help curb the spread of these parasites.
Many businesses and residences throughout the area also have much larger street pigeon problems, and at Birds Away/Pigeons Away, we can help. We offer a full range of non-fatal, humane service options that can help keep unwanted birds away from your property. To learn more about our full range of pest bird abatement services or to schedule a consultation appointment, call us today at 925-798-9041.