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Getting Rid of Crows

Category Birds
Crows are highly intelligent birds, but sometimes their raucous calls, or dominance of the bird feeder may be cause for wanting them to move on. This is a guide about getting rid of crows.


Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

By 0 found this helpful
March 11, 2017

What can I do about crows in the trees near my house? I hear them most every morning at about the same time as the blue-jays. They make a god awful sound. It's as if both blue-jays and crows are saying, " get up, get up, we're up, so you should too."

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March 11, 20170 found this helpful

Here's some information on getting rid of crows.  Get-Rid-of-Crows

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March 11, 20170 found this helpful

Farmers have been trying to get rid of them from their gardens for years, hence the use of scare crows. You can also try rubber snakes, but once they realize they are not real, that won't work. Fireworks will work, but often they come back. You did not mention if you were in town or in the country. Some things, can't be done in town, such as the fireworks.

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March 11, 20170 found this helpful

There are ultrasonic crow repellants on the market. I don't know if it's in your budget but it might be worth saving for if it means you can get more sleep b

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March 11, 20170 found this helpful

Crows and jays are just doing what they are designed to do this time of year-the males make a great noise to tell everyone else they have arrived and "don't mess with us, we are ready for mating!!!"

You can shoot large water cannons at the trees, go hunting and other terrible ideas! In short there is very little you can do to prevent the crows and the noise. It is important to remember that crows were here long before we humans invaded their territory.

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March 12, 20170 found this helpful

I do not have an answer, but did you know crows are very smart? They are capable of facial recognition and hold grudges so do not be too mean!

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March 12, 20170 found this helpful

A largely unknown fact is that crows are very intelligent birds. Other than searching for suggestions online to solve your irritation, I suggest looking up the crow as an animal totem. Native Americans believe that animals cross our paths to give us a message. Perhaps changing the way you see your situation and listening to what your message is will better enable you to deal with the problem.

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March 13, 20170 found this helpful

We hang cd disc for reflectors and it gets the birds out of our yard.

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March 13, 20170 found this helpful

Check out this product. It's a bird repellent tape using holographic colors.

https://www.ama  th/dp/B000KGYXGQ

It's typically under $10. Target has it for $7.

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By 0 found this helpful
July 25, 2016

I am from India. I'm being under close attacks by crows in the early mornings. When I come out of my house in the early morning I am attacked by a crow and suddenly a group of crows start to gather around me chirping loudly at the same time. How can I get rid of them? I want to know immediate answers. Thank you.

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February 27, 20170 found this helpful

An old Cherokee answer to this is to take a corn on the cob, then take horsehair, wrap the horsehair around the corn on the cob and place it in your yard. WHen the crows come to eat the corn, they will choke on the horsehair.

You could also get or fabricate a scarecrow

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February 28, 20170 found this helpful

They could be protecting their young, and that's why they are attacking you. Don't walk under any trees. This lasts a couple of weeks.

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June 9, 20170 found this helpful

A nest is nearby!

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February 9, 20150 found this helpful

How do you get them to go away?

By Dee

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February 14, 20150 found this helpful


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July 22, 2012

Our oak trees are full of big ugly black crows. Is there any way to get rid of them without scaring off the other birds? The crows are very destructive, tearing up pots of flowers and flower beds, and scaring away the mocking birds and blue jays, not to mention the mess they make of our patio furniture. I don't want to hurt them, I just want them to go away.

By Cisco's Mom from FL

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July 23, 20120 found this helpful

Crows are intelligent and if one of the flock is hurt at a location, they will leave and never return. You might try a BB gun; that should not hurt them seriously, but give them a sting. Also, if you could net one - throw something over it keep the bird for a couple of days and set it free - might work.

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July 24, 20120 found this helpful

Methods to disperse crows from a night roost include:

Harassment Techniques

Harassment techniques include visual and audio stimuli and an assortment of other approaches to make crows uncomfortable enough to move elsewhere. If possible, act quickly when large numbers of roosting crows are detected. The birds will be more willing to abandon a roost site they have not been using long.

Note: Most harassment techniques are effective only for a short time and the public may not like them because they cause crows to move elsewheresuch as a neighborhood park or someones backyard containing large trees.

Visual scare devices include Mylar tape, eye-spot balloons, scarecrows, and laser devices. Visual harassment devices can provide effective short-term control, especially when they are used in combination with auditory devices.

Audio scare devices include hazing with pyrotechnics such as cracker shells, blanks, propane cannons, and recorded crow distress and warning calls.

The main drawback with recorded calls is that crows ultimately learn they are not real and get used (habituate) to them. Because distress calls are given when a crow is being held by a predator, and alarm calls are given when there is a predator in the neighborhood, crows probably expect to see a predator whenever they hear one of these calls. If they do not, they may realize that something is not right and habituate more rapidly to the distress and alarm calls. For this reason, it is wise to pair the broadcast of these calls with a predator model, such as a scarecrow.

When using any auditory scare device, change the area from which it is emitted, daily if possible. When using pyrotechnics, try to elevate them above the roost site.

Crows scare most easily when they are flying. They are most difficult to scare when perched in the protection of their roost. Therefore, audio devices should begin to be used when the first birds come in to roost, usually an hour and a half before dark. The same group of crows may circle around and come toward the roost many times, so scaring efforts need to continue until it gets dark.

Scaring should stop with darkness or the crows will become accustomed to the sounds. If using recorded alarm calls, play them only 10 to 15 seconds per minute when the birds are coming in. When most of the birds are perched, play the call continuously until dark. If possible, early morning scaring should be used in conjunction with evening scaring, and should begin as soon as the first bird movement is detected in the roost, often just before daylight.

Success may not be achieved for several nights and will entail continuous efforts every evening and every morning. Because the crows may attempt to establish temporary roosts in other unsuitable locations, scaring efforts may be needed elsewhere until the birds move to an acceptable area. If crows are disturbed in their new roost site they will move back to the old one. Be prepared to resume efforts if they return.

Modify the Night Roost

Modifying the structure of the crows night roost can discourage the birds from using it. This includes thinning up to 50 percent of the branches of roost trees, or removing trees from dense groves to reduce the availability of perch sites and to open the trees to the weather. A tree service company can remove tree limbs.

Before and after pruning of a large coniferous tree and a small deciduous tree to reduce their attractiveness to roosting birds.

Other Techniques

Other techniques to disperse crows include using 4-inch mesh bird netting to create a barrier between the roost and the crows; spraying crows with water from a high pressure hose (some cities have used a fire hose); installing a 360 degree sprinkler up in the roost tree; and lighting up the interior of the roost with bright fluorescent lights.

Dive-Bombing Crows

Most aggressive behavior from birds is motivated by defense of their territory or young, or their search for handouts. Hummingbirds have been noted to buzz people wearing red, perhaps thinking that they were a group of nectar-rich flowers. Pigeons and swallows may appear to be attacking humans when actually they are returning to their nests in the eaves of buildings.

In the spring and summer crows and other birds establish territories, build nests, and rear young. During this period, adult birds may engage in belligerent behavior, such as attacking creatures many times their size. In this case, the birds are simply trying to protect their homes, their mates, or their young.

When possible, stay away from nesting areas with aggressive birds until the young are flying (three to four weeks after eggs hatch) and the parents are no longer so protective. (Do not attempt to rescue chicks found outside nests when adult birds are calling loudly nearbysee Baby Birds Out of the Nest for information.) If you must walk past a nest, wave your arms slowly overhead to keep the birds at a distance. Other protective actions include wearing a hat or helmet, or carrying an umbrella.

Lethal Control

Shooting is not an effective way to manage crow populations overall. The number of birds that can be killed by shooting is small relative to the size of the flock. However, shooting may be helpful where only a few birds are present, and in supplementing or reinforcing other dispersal techniques. First check the local ordinances regarding discharging firearms. For additional information regarding shooting crows, see Legal Status.

Public Health Concerns

Although health risks from birds are often exaggerated, large populations of roosting crows may present risks of disease to people nearby. The most serious health risks are from disease organisms growing in accumulations of droppings, feathers, and debris under a roost. This is most likely to occur if roosts have been active for years.

Precautions need to be taken when working around large concentrations of crow droppings. Call your local Public Health office for information.

At the time of writing, West Nile virus, a virus carried by mosquitoes, has killed thousands of crows in the Northeast, Southeast, and Midwest portions of the United States. Call your local Public Health office updated information. Always wear gloves when handling dead or live birds.

Legal Status

The crow is classified as a predatory bird (WAC 232-12-004). A hunting license and an open season are required to shoot them. Under federal guidelines, individuals may kill crows without a hunting license or permit when they are found committing, or about to commit, depredations on agricultural crops, or when concentrated in such numbers and manner as to constitute a health hazard or other nuisance (16 U.S.C. Sections 703712). The Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) is located at

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By 0 found this helpful
June 19, 2010

I feed the birds, but the crows seem to take over the bird feeder. I see them throwing the seeds on the ground and eating the good stuff. I don't mind feeding the crows, but how can I stop them from taking over?

By Nan from Cocoa Beach, FL

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August 2, 20100 found this helpful

Since the answer may be location specific, I'll say I live in a suburb of Washington, DC. I had the same problem with crows monopolizing my feeders filled with sunflower seed and mixed bird seed. I switched to safflower and nyjer seed and the crows left. When I added feeders with suet and sunflower seed to those with safflower and nyjer seed, the crows came back. I plan to switch back to just safflower and nyjer seed next.

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