Categories
Spiders

What are the most common spiders in UK?

We like to think of our homes as sanctuaries isolated from the outside world, but many types of spiders can live indoors. Some are accidental visitors, while others live for short periods of time.

There are even spider species that enjoy our comfortable indoor spaces all year round, where they happily spend their entire lives and even have offspring. These arachnids are usually stealthy, and almost all are harmless.

Spiders can provide services to control other pests, and even eat other spiders. Of course, if you suffer from arachnophobia, all the benefits that ‘domestic’ spiders provide won’t make you want them to disappear immediately from your surroundings, and we understand that.

Certainly, there are also poisonous spiders, and their bites can cause severe reactions. These reactions are often more severe in children or the elderly, or in people with compromised immune systems.

Whether in the cellar, in a corner of our living room, in the bathtub or hanging quietly from the ceiling, these are the most common spiders in the UK, and ones you’re likely to see without leaving the house.

Common House Spider

Tegenaria domestica

The common house spider (Tegenaria domestica) doesn’t get its name accidentally or whim. They are not only the most common spider in UK homes, but also in Europe and North America. They are completely harmless and can be found all year round.

This arachnid is an agile insect hunter that relies on its vision and speed of movement as well as its webbing to catch insects. The body length of females ranges from 7 to 12 mm and males from 5 to 10 mm, not including their legs.

They can be identified by their dark brown colour and long legs. The webs of this species are mainly found in corners, and are shaped like a flat funnel attached to the wall. They move at short intervals, stopping frequently.

Giant house spider

Eratigena atrica

The giant house spider (Eratigena atrica) is among the largest spiders in the UK and Europe, and is also one of the fastest. Its top speed is around 53 cm per second, which is a record in the arachnid world.

They eat insects that fall into their webs, as they have very limited vision for hunting. These webs are funnel-shaped and can be found in the darkest corners of the house such as cupboards, chimneys, and other quiet places.

The size of their legs makes them effortless to identify, as they can reach a length of up to 75 mm. Their bite is harmless to humans, and they are generally reluctant to bite, preferring to hide or escape.

False widow spiders

Steatoda nobilis

The false widow spider (Steatoda nobilis) is outwardly very similar to the black widow, with which it is often confused. It is one of the few local spiders that can inflict a painful bite, similar to a bee or wasp sting. They were introduced from the Canary Islands about 150 years ago.

They usually live outdoors in warm weather, but when temperatures drop they are much more likely to be found indoors. Furthermore, they have a bulbous brown abdomen with cream-coloured markings that are often compared to the shape of a skull.

Its appearance and size is very similar to the cupboard spider (Steatoda grossa), another occasional inhabitant of UK homes, and to which it is related. Females range in size from 9 to 13 mm, while males range from 6 to 11 mm.

Juvenile spiders live hidden in small crevices and holes, which can make eradication difficult.

European cave spider

Meta menardi

There are two species of spiders that receive this name (Meta menardi and Meta bourneti). Young spiders are attracted to sunlight, so they seek new places to populate. Adult spiders are photophobic and live in dark places, such as basements, caves, or mines.

The behaviour of the two species is very similar. They come out at dusk to hunt small insects using their venom. However, they are not dangerous to humans and the effect of their venom is negligible on large mammals, including humans and pets.

They are large (up to 50 mm wingspan) and glossy satin black to reddish brown. They often have a different coloured back of the body, varying between black, brown, or even olive green. Due to their nocturnal habits, they are not often seen.

Cellar spiders

Pholcus phalangioides

Cellar spiders, also known as daddy long-legs, are the common name for several species of the family Pholcidae. However, if you live in the UK you are more likely to encounter a Pholcus phalangioides at home.

As their nickname suggests, these spiders have eight very long, slender legs that are covered in fine grey bristles. On average their legs are 5 to 6 times longer than the spider’s body. Their slender and fragile appearance is unmistakable.

This spider species is considered beneficial because it preys on other spiders. In contrast, it is harmless to humans and the potential medicinal use of its webs has been reported. Their webs are irregular and very loose, making them difficult to see.

Zebra spiders

Salticus scenicus

The zebra spider (Salticus scenicus) is a jumping spider common in homes and gardens in the Northern Hemisphere. Its common name refers to its vivid black and white colouration. While its scientific name is derived from the Latin words “Salticus” (jumping) and “scenicus” (theatrical).

Female zebra spiders are between 6 and 10 mm long, while males are between 4 and 6 mm. They are well distinguished from other spiders by their particularly large anterior medium-sized eyes. They have excellent binocular vision.

When they detect their prey, which may be other spiders, insects or arthropods, they get as close as they can before jumping on them. Before jumping, they attach a silk thread to the surface, which prevents them from falling if the jump fails.

In homes,they are mainly found in gardens, but can often be found behind curtains. They are completely harmless to humans and pets.

Categories
Pigeons

Pigeon Nest Removal

The word pest is not usually associated with birds, until you know the damage they can be causing to the roof of your property, or the paintwork of cars in a garage and driveway, then you might want to make an exception on how you classify them. Pigeons are by far the birds we most often associate with pests in our cities.

The pigeon is a common bird throughout the UK, and they have little fear of people. The absence or scarcity of natural predators has accustomed pigeons to using offices, commercial premises, houses, and any other building as a place to roost and nest.

There is every reason you should want to get rid of pigeons that frequent your home or business. But doing it on your own is not easy. Their instincts make them stick to the places where they nest. And they can have up to six broods a year, depending on the weather meaning you could be harboring an infestation very fast.

Why remove pigeon nests?

This bird carries twice as many diseases as most pests in cities and suburban areas, their nests are a health risk to anyone near them. Pigeons are the most common type of bird in cities and cause problems in all kinds of buildings:

  • Pigeon droppings are highly corrosive, containing large amounts of uric acid that can damage most types of surfaces, and electrical components such as solar panels and internet cables
  • It is essential to keep pigeons away from equipment installed on roofs. Their feathers and debris can damage them, as can ventilation and air-conditioning equipment. These roofs are also their favorite nesting sites.
  • Finally, microorganisms (viruses, bacteria, and fungi) found in pigeon waste can pose a health risk. Contact with them, or accidental inhalation can lead to diseases such as psittacosis, histoplasmosis, and cryptococcosis.

Not all nests can be removed

In the UK it is illegal to remove or disturb a wild bird’s nest when it is nesting, whether the nest contains eggs or live chicks, or even if the nest is still under construction. This is following the Wildlife and Countryside Act of 1981.

The Act covers not only sparrows, starlings, and gulls, but also feral birds such as pigeons. Moving a nest can cause the parent pigeons to abandon the nest, resulting in the young dying of starvation or thirst.

So it’s necessary to know how to move the nest properly so that no legal trouble follows you afterward. Our professional technicians have the knowledge and experience to remove pigeon nests so you don’t have to.

Types of pigeon control and prevention treatments

Our treatments aim to remove and prevent pigeons on your property, for this to work properly its important to unsdrestand how pigeons mate, nest and live. Our technicians have the knowledge and skill to implement tailored strategies, making our pigeon control top rated in the UK. This is how it works:

  • Netting installation- We place a net around balconies and terraces to prevent pigeons from using these areas as cover from weather and direct sun.
  • Spike installation- Our spikes are placed on ledges so that pigeons cant nest or even stand on your property preventing them from using these as breeding grounds, these spikes wont harm them if they try to use them but they will simply fly away.
  • Wire bird- this system is less visible than spikes although not as effective, the outcome will be the same as the wires are placed so that ledges cant be used.
  • Bird Repellent box- Our bird box emits a high frequency sound that only birds can hear, this is placed high above trees where other treatments cant be placed since branches are not as strudry as concrete. The effect of the box is still highly effective and will make your garden areas unabailavble for pigeons to nest.
  • Solar Panel protection- this treatment places a net around your solar panels so that pigeons cant use them as breeding ground. They love to nets under panels since they offer perfect protection from the sun but their waste being mainly acid will eventualy damage the panels electrical compmnents rendering them useless.
Categories
Pigeons

How to keep pigeons away from my home?

Pigeons are very friendly birds, whether we see them take flight or come to feed them. A long time ago we used to train them to be carrier pigeons, which means that today they are not afraid of people.

However, times have changed and pigeons are now a nuisance to those who wish to keep their homes and gardens in good condition. Moreover, pigeon droppings are a breeding ground for diseases and pests that we do not want to spread.

If you want to know how to keep pigeons away from your home, we recommend you read on. But as all wars are won by knowing your enemy, you must know all about pigeon behaviour first.

Pigeon behaviour

Feral pigeons are the ones that cause most concern to homeowners and business owners, due to the habits of these birds. They tend to roost in large groups on the eaves of roofs and walls of buildings.

Stopping pigeons from feeding is not too difficult, but even many people do it unintentionally when they drop grain and other debris, as well as leaving bins uncovered.

It is common for pigeons to deposit their droppings on pavements, pavements, and buildings. But what many do not know is that their droppings are so corrosive that they deteriorate the surfaces of structures over time.

These birds generate debris, essentially made up of feathers and nesting debris, which gets stuck in ventilation ducts, gutters and pipes, causing blockages of all kinds.

And if that sounds bad enough, pigeons transmit numerous diseases through their faeces. They are responsible for the transmission of vermin such as ticks, lice, mites, bird bugs and many others.

So, all in all, there are many reasons why we should get rid of pigeons.

How to actively get rid of pigeons?

Here are the most effective control methods you can implement to keep pigeons away so that they don’t continue to cause damage wherever they are:

Use ultrasonic repellents

Ultrasonic repellents are available to help you keep pigeons away by emitting sounds and alarm calls typical of predators. They include customization modes to add recordings that sound more natural.

You can find other devices that sound at low frequencies that only pigeons can hear. This sound has to be irritating enough to make the pigeons think your home is a dangerous place and stay away.

Use of birds of prey

The use of birds of prey (as long as you are comfortable keeping them) is incredible, as it is a natural tool that triggers the fight or flight response in pigeons. To achieve this, you must allow your birds to fly in the problem area frequently.

The beauty of this method is that the pigeons quickly understand that the territory belongs to a predator and will take flight and go elsewhere. This is certainly one of the least traumatic ways to get rid of pigeons.

Scarecrow bird

If you can’t keep birds of prey, perhaps the alternative of scarecrow birds might work for you. They are usually in the shape of birds of prey, and you can get one that has a 3D format, with realistic dimensions, that makes different movements and emulates the sound of these birds.

But beyond the fact that the fake bird looks and acts like the real thing, the pigeons may not fall into the trap if you leave it in one place. Move your scarecrow birds between several locations so that you trick the pigeons into thinking it is a real bird.

More invasive procedures

Anti-bird barbs are a group of barbs that are attached and fastened to a surface for preventing pigeons from roosting or nesting in places you wish to keep free of any birds.

Parallel wires are an effective method of preventing pigeons from approaching your roof or other places in your home that are attractive to them. You can do this by installing parallel wires across the structure to deter pigeons from roosting on the structure.

While it is true that bird netting is not very aesthetically pleasing, it is extremely effective in keeping pigeons at bay. This type of netting operates similarly to parallel wires, creating an anti-nesting net.

There are special gels that repel pigeons, as they contain a chemical substance that makes the pigeons’ legs stick together and makes it difficult for them to get free. You can also install other devices such as decoy kites, lasers, shock tapes, among others.

Passive measures to keep pigeons away

We recommend that you apply all these measures with the active methods of pigeon avoidance.

  • If you want to keep pigeons away from your home without having to spend a lot of money, look for any object or surface that reflects light, such as CDs, strips of aluminium foil, pieces of mirrors or reflective tape. These birds are sensitive to the reflection of shiny objects.
  • Pigeons like water, but not a stream that goes straight at them. If you have a garden, you can use the sprinkler you use every day to water your lawn, or you can invest in one. They are inexpensive and available at any hardware store.
  • Eliminate any food sources in your home, whether accidental (litter) or intentional (feeders). Pigeons like grains, berries, earthworms, etc.
  • Block off any spaces that make pigeons feel comfortable or shelter from rain and other agents.
  • Bird baths are great because they attract different birds but having them is not a good idea if there is a pigeon infestation in your home. Remove these structures, as these birds like bird baths for grooming.
  • Any pigeon deterrent is useless if you do not clean the areas where pigeons roost. Use substances such as soap and bleach to clean surfaces, and if possible use a brush for deep cleaning.
Any Questions?