Buzzards from Hell

thinknpinkDecember 10, 2007

We seem to have every buzzard in the area roosting in my huge Cherry Tree that must be over 100 years old. I understand they are important and do a wonderful job of cleaning up road kill and dead deer that hunters wound and don't find...But I think they need to find another place to call home other than my property! I don't like the flapping of the wings at night..(creepy)..sunning on my barn and on my fence in the morning. It would not bother me so much if it was just a few..but most like 50 plus each day. We tried to scare them off with fire crakers and even a shot gun. They keep comming back! I'm sure that all that poop is full of stuff we don't need to be around!

Any ideas to get them to move on??

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yakimadn

If you don't do something, you'll be able to make some real nice cherry furniture in a few years. Since they are federally protected, shooting a few would seem like a last resort. But, if they are damaging property (and they are)you may have a case with your local fish and game folks. When I was a kid, we had buzzards roosting on a big power line tower. No harm done and it was neat to watch them, but they were way too shy to come close to where people were. I'm in Germany now. Instead of buzzards, it's pigeons, crows, ravens, and a couple of others that are just as messy. Everything has spines sticking up to poke anything that tries to land, or some windowsills are sloped at about 60 degrees. Some folks nave resorted to electric fences. Maybe one of the sonic pest control things would work?

Good Luck,

Dave

    Bookmark   December 11, 2007 at 4:26AM
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velvet_sparrow(Zone 5b, Gardnerville, NV)

How both strange and wonderful...did the buzzards just recently start congregating on your property or have they always done this? If it's recent, think about what has changed in the ecosystem around there, maybe ask the local University, Fish & Game folks & farmers.

Got any pictures?

Velvet ~:>

    Bookmark   December 12, 2007 at 5:20AM
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thinknpink

Didn't get pics but I could do that. They have been roosting in the cherry tree for about 6 months seems like after about 15 acres a mile away was logged. I got the idea about the fire crakers and shot gun (no shooting the birds) from the wildlife and fisheries dept. I didn't get too upset until they started landing on my barn and fence in the morning. If you go back to the tree the poop is piled up on plants and trees like snow! The sky is almost black in the morning and evening with the huge things. Seems as the months go on more and more come to the tree. Will they kill my tree??? It's a black cherry and quite old also a good source of food for other birds.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2007 at 6:21PM
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giventake(9)

Hire someone to string monofilment line all in the limbs of the tree, them birds will get tired of it. I would stop it ASAP.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2007 at 11:40PM
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goodhors(z5 MI)

I WOULD NOT advise using the monofiliment line. That may work for small birds, but large ones like buzzards and hawks will tangle and get hurt in it. You could easily damage and kill them.

Talking to the local DNR, you might be able to get the tree netted, like fruit trees are to prevent birds eating all the produce. With only one tree, even large, it might be a reasonable request. I have found plastic netting to be fairly inexpensive in larger sizes. Might have to put a couple nets together to cover a large Black Cherry.

I am not sure the barn and local fencing could be fixed to prevent roosting though. Rail fencing is very popular here for the buzzards to sit on in the mornings. However there is a lot of local woods to roost and nest in. They would have many other places, even with 15 acres logged off.

Talking to the DNR, maybe they could put up some structures that birds could use, for roosting or nesting. Located AWAY from your house or places birds would be bothered. The birds may be happy to move on then. With volume of birds, they probably would kill live trees that got transplanted in, even big ones. This is why I suggested a fake looking roost, structure type roost. Buzzards do need places to roost and stretch wings in the mornings, get warmed up before being able to fly off. They like being able to see, so higher roosts, may be enticing as well.

Birds sound like they don't have any high, good visiblility to see far, roosting locations since the logging.

Do call the DNR right away, so things can move quickly for you. Start at County level, work up to State if not helpful. I agree it would be very disconcerting to have so many large birds move in!! Also check for a local Audubon Society. They can be helpful in resolving wildlife problems. You might get the news involved if no other progress is shown.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2007 at 12:42AM
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more_to_grow(z6CT)

Sounds cool!! I sometimes have crows roost in a valley on my property and enjoy seeing them come in for the night.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2007 at 9:42AM
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velvet_sparrow(Zone 5b, Gardnerville, NV)

What goodhors said...they like to roost high, and your yard sounds like the place to be. In some areas they put up big T-stands at the top of power poles because the local birds of prey were electrocuting themselves when they tried to land on them. I know you've got too many birds to try such a thing, though. What the buzzards need is a higher, more attractive roost away from your yard. I don't know if they will kill your tree or not, but if enough of them roost in it, it's possible. :(

I wonder if it might help to spray the tree with something smelly that they wouldn't like...?

Velvet ~:>

    Bookmark   December 14, 2007 at 4:09AM
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thinknpink

I made losts more phone calls today with the run-around as usual. Nobody really cares. I live in Louisiana and trust me people in the positions they have Do Not Follow the Law and as long as the pay check is comming in WHY DO ANYTHING At All?? Who's going to check up on them?? One lady I talked to today said I was the fourth person to report a problem with buzzards in this month.

I did some research on the wed and this is no joking matter, they can kill trees. Also I use the word buzzard and really they are Vultures. I will try to attach some info on them that will make you ill(like me).

I can't spray or net an 80 foot tree I'm not rich enough to hire a hellicopter to do that! We have the black headed Vultures that are also birds of prey.

The American Black Vulture is a scavenger and feeds on carrion, but will also eat eggs or kill new born animals. In areas populated by humans, it also feeds at garbage dumps. It finds its meals using either its keen eyesight or by following other vultures which possess a sense of smell. Lacking a syrinxÂthe vocal organ of birdsÂits only vocalizations are grunts or low hisses.[2] It lays its eggs in caves, hollow trees, or on the bare ground and generally raises two chicks each year, which it feeds by regurgitation. In the United States of America, the vulture receives legal protection under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918.[3] This vulture also appeared in Mayan codices.
The American Black Vulture also occasionally feeds on livestock or deer. It is the only species of New World vulture which preys on cattle. It occasionally harasses cows which are giving birth, but primarily preys on new-born calves. In its first few weeks, a calf will allow vultures approach it. The vultures swarm the calf in a group, then peck at the calf's eyes, or at the nose or the tongue. The calf then goes into shock and is killed by the vultures. The American Black Vulture is considered a threat by cattle ranchers due to its predation on newborn cattle.[39] The droppings produced by American Black Vultures and other vultures can harm or kill trees and other vegetation.
In the United States it is illegal to take, kill, or possess American Black Vultures and violation of the law is punishable by a fine of up to 15,000 US dollars and imprisonment of up to six months.
the American Black Vulture flaps its wings more frequently during flight. It is known to regurgitate when approached or disturbed, which assists in predator deterrence and taking flight by decreasing its takeoff weight. Like all New World Vultures, the American Black Vulture often defecates on its own legs, using the evaporation of the water in the feces and/or urine to cool itself, a process known as urohydrosis.

    Bookmark   December 14, 2007 at 10:33PM
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Beeone(4 N. Wyo.)

Apparently your tree was a second choice site that became the first choice when their roost was removed in the logging, unless they moved in to take advantage of the open area and potential food supply on the logged ground they couldn't reach before.

As you have tried, make your tree an undesirable place to roost. You might try practicing "roostus interruptus". When they start coming in in the evening to roost, start harrassing them with the fire crackers or shotgun, maybe shoot some bottle rockets at the top of the tree. Get a pellet gun and shoot plastic pellets that won't injure the birds and try target practicing. The goal is force all of them to find a roost elsewhere at night. Once you have prevented them from roosting in your tree for a couple nights, they will generally see your tree as an undesirable roost again and all you will need are occasional "booster" shots.

    Bookmark   December 16, 2007 at 3:29AM
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giventake(9)

goodhors whats wrong with a good meal of dead buzzard?

    Bookmark   December 16, 2007 at 11:10PM
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velvet_sparrow(Zone 5b, Gardnerville, NV)

Oh lordy, do those ever sound disgusting! *bleah*

Any chance you can have your tree topped off to make it shorter than the surrounding objects? It may save the tree, even if it means more buzzard poop on your barn...

Have you tried contacting places like the Audobon Society, major zoos, etc. for their advice?

Velvet ~:>

    Bookmark   December 17, 2007 at 4:52AM
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tmeherg_att_net

It is destroying campers at my campground!! What can I do??Please e-mail me with any help

    Bookmark   May 15, 2011 at 10:27PM
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