How Do I Get Rid of Those Annoying Swallows????

Updated on May 26, 2010
D.B. asks from Decorah, IA
4 answers

I need some ideas on how to keep those darn swallows from building their nest in the entry way of our front door. For the past 3 years I have been out there knocking their nest down. They are so persistant that they keep building no matter how many times I knock it down. Also, our house is brick and right above the door there is one brick that sticks out and since they can't get a nest built, there is always one bird that sits on that brick and takes his dumps right outside my door. It is a big mess and I would think a health hazard. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.

What can I do next?

  • Add yourAnswer own comment
  • Ask your own question Add Question
  • Join the Mamapedia community Mamapedia
  • as inappropriate
  • this with your friends

More Answers



answers from Minneapolis on

Unfortunately, most naturalists will say knocking the nests down will not get rid of them, and it may be illegal depending on where you live.

A couple of things that helped us was:

1: If you get enough sunlight in that area, hang mirrors, or strips of shiny foil or tin foil so that it flickers and blows in the wind. Birds get startled and frightened by this and won't hang around.

2. Consider hanging chimes, a flag, windsock, or some sort of wind spinning mill. In short, anything that moves will frighten them. Here's is an idea of my own, try A large plastic owl hanging from a hook (get these at a garden center). Owls are predators of many small birds and animals(not sure if swallows are included)but it worked with this pesky woodpecker that was wrecking my siding.

3. If they're building in an area you can cover with mesh or wire, they won't come back. They like ledges and cubbies in high vaulted areas, so if you block the spaces with wire they won't be able to build again.

Other than deterents, there really isn't more you can do. Swallows carry diseases harmful to humans, and are very territorial, and because of that have been known to dive/attack people. If none of the deterents help, contact a wildlife specialist to remove them.

The following information is from

Mud, cliff or barn swallow control is not for the amateur. There are federal laws protecting the swallow. Once they have laid their eggs in the nest, you cannot disturb them. There are large fines associated with touching a mud-swallow nest that contains swallow eggs or swallow babies. Through the use of fiber-optic cameras, United Wildlife’s swallow-removal specialists know how to identify what stage swallows are at and when is the safe and legal time to get rid of swallows. United Wildlife swallow removers must remove the swallow infestation before there can be a lot of success with swallows. Two swallows are too many to have on one building.

Homeowners may try to take matters into their own hands by shooting and poisoning swallows. First of all, this is illegal activity. Illegal use of poisoning can affect pets and people. Shooting causes even more swallow problems, besides the fact that it’s illegal to shoot swallows. Some homeowners try to get rid of swallows by pressure-washing nests off the walls, eaves or siding. You could do this all day, and it wouldn’t entirely solve the swallow problem.

United Wildlife’s swallow-repelling specialists apply a special repellent that drives swallows from their nests. We only use non-lethal swallow control remedies. United Wildlife needs to remedy a swallow problem either prior to swallow egg-laying or after swallow babies have already fled the nest. United Wildlife swallow control is the most successful company in U.S. in its efforts to control and prevent swallow damage and nesting through the use of non-lethal swallow repellents.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Minneapolis on

We dealt with this a couple years ago. I never realized that swallows were so pesky!! We read somewhere to put up a plastic owl, so we got one at Menards (I think for about $5 or $10), and hung it up. It looked a bit kitchy, but better than all the other contraptions we had up before that to discourage the nests! (And, better than the toxic mud-poop mixture that was covering our door and walkway!) We had it up for about 3 weeks and they've never touched our house again. The key is to hang the owl from a string so that it moves a bit in the breeze. We used simple fishing line as it was mostly invisible and strong enough to hold the owl. I think we used a paper clip or something to clip it to our soffit. Good luck!!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Minneapolis on

I've heard of people putting an upside down clay pot in the area, or something that won't break if it falls...but put something in that area to keep it filled so there is no room for the bird to sit or make a nest.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Atlanta on

A swallow problem can be exhausting. Absolute Bird Control has several methods that have proven to be effective with this type of bird problem. First, try the outdoor sound deterrents, such as the Bird Chase Super Sonic. This lets out predator and distress calls which will frighten the birds and can be programmed specifically for swallows. An alternative is netting. Try placing the net at an angle so the swallows won't have access to that area. For other options and more information visit

1 mom found this helpful
For Updates and Special Promotions
Follow Us

Related Questions