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How to Keep Woodpeckers Away from Your House

By Nite Guard LLC
how to keep woodpeckers awayWoodpeckers are hammering away at your home’s siding and you're ready to do something about it. So, what are your options when it comes to keeping woodpeckers away from your house?

First, let's find out why the woodpeckers chose your home. To do this, you'll need to step out into your yard for a closer inspection at your home's siding.

Bugs

Visit the woodpecker's pecking sites. See anything moving? If you do, your primary problem is insects, not woodpeckers. Your home’s siding is simply providing an easy meal, and who can resist an easy, free meal?

If you suspect that insects are living in your home's siding, look into hiring an exterminator.

With the bugs gone, the woodpeckers don't have a good excuse to stick around. Problem solved!

Marking Territory, Attracting Mates

You can think of woodpecker drumming or pecking as a way for woodpeckers to mark territory or inform potential mates of their presence.

So, what are your options if the woodpeckers are drumming just to drum?

Try creating an unfriendly environment. Use a decoy owl, flash tape, and a sound recording of a woodpecker distress call — all at the same time. For the woodpecker looking for a place to drum, an owl watching their movements, bright flash tape crackling in the breeze, and a woodpecker distress call are all too overwhelming to handle. The woodpecker would much rather fly away in search of a calmer pecking environment than stick around at your place.

Creating Nests

If it looks like your woodpecker is creating a nest, you can provide it with a readymade alternative, that’s if the nest is still empty. If you see eggs, it’s too late. But if the woodpecker has just started hammering into your siding, encourage them to take up residence in a birdhouse by hanging the birdhouse where you see them pecking.

Like we mentioned, if you already see eggs in the cavity, it’s too late to take any action. Why? All woodpeckers are protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, so it’s illegal to harm them, their nests, and eggs. 

Let nature run its course because the woodpeckers won’t be there forever. Most woodpeckers vacate their nests by midsummer. Once you see they woodpecker family has left, patch up the cavity using wood putty.

Endangered Woodpeckers

Currently there are two endangered woodpecker species that you must leave entirely alone. That means no putting up flash tape, no decoy owls, no sound recordings — no deterrents of any kind. According to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, the “Gila woodpecker (Melanerpes uropygialis) and Gilded northern flicker (Colaptes auratus chrysoides) are California-listed endangered species and cannot be harassed or harmed in any way.”

In the case of the Gila woodpecker and the Gilded northern flicker, you have to let nature run its course.

Need Help?

If you completed your investigation and still don’t know why woodpeckers are on your property, we recommend speaking with a local wildlife expert or animal control. They can do their own investigation, which hopefully sheds light on your woodpecker problem.

If you have any questions about using Nite Guard Repellent Tape to keep woodpeckers away, feel free to call us at 1-800-328-6647 or send us a message using our contact form.