Do plastic owls work?

Discussion in 'Flight Following' started by AdamZ, Jun 9, 2019.

  1. AdamZ

    AdamZ Administrator Management Council Member

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    I showed up to the airport this morning to get out and do some approaches. The starlings had other plans. Found a boat load of nesting materials in the lower cowl of the bonanza. They got in through the cowl flaps as I had plug in the cowls. Its a real Pain in the keester and I'd like to prevent it in the future. I've seen those plastic owls and rubber snakes and those big yellow inflatable balls with black eyes and wonder if anyone has experience with any of them and if they work or not.
     
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2019
  2. cowman

    cowman En-Route PoA Supporter

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    No, at least not for me.
     
  3. FormerHangie

    FormerHangie En-Route

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    We had a problem with hawks attacking people in our parking lot. Management put up some plastic owls. The hawks flew over to them to give them a closer look, and after that, ignored them.
     
  4. Zeldman

    Zeldman Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I have problems with sparrows in my garage. I put up a plastic owl. I move it about 3 times a day and after week I put it inside for a couple days. I still have the sparrows, but they are really jittery.

    When my health comes back I will pull all the insulation, close up the eaves and hope that fixes the bird problem.
     
  5. woodchucker

    woodchucker Cleared for Takeoff

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    No. They really don’t. Put a real owl there instead if you actually want results.
     
  6. IK04

    IK04 Cleared for Takeoff

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    In our big hangar, the plastic owl provided the birds a place to perch and poop.

    The pellet gun worked well, though...
     
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  7. Pilawt

    Pilawt Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    A friend of mine put up a plastic owl in his hangar. It was very effective, but only in keeping out plastic birds and plastic mice.
     
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  8. bflynn

    bflynn Final Approach

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    They work just until the other critters figure out they're not moving. Big money if someone can come up with a robotic one that acts in such a way that is actually scares off animals.
     
  9. midwestpa24

    midwestpa24 Cleared for Takeoff

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  10. Groundpounder

    Groundpounder Line Up and Wait

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    I had a Phoebe trying to make a nest behind my front door light. Every time he'd start making a nest, I would knock it down, and he'd start building a new one. They use mud to build their nests, so it was making a big mess. I decided to get a plastic owl, and put it on the porch railing in the general vicinity of the front door. Never saw the Phoebe again.
     
  11. ircphoenix

    ircphoenix En-Route

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    Plastic owls don't work worth a damn. I hear good things about CDs hanging from strings. Apparently light reflecting off of them and the movement from dangling can scare stuff off. One of the reasons there are bright little strips of silver foil tied to trees and grapevines I suppose.
     
  12. LongRoadBob

    LongRoadBob Cleared for Takeoff

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    I don’t know if they have them in the US, but in Europe a few years back I noticed on tops of buildings and other places a sort of hawklike bird, on a long wire that when wind blows look incredibly realistic. In fact the first few times they fooled me until I looked much closer.

    Don’t know if they work or not.

    Edit to add: I found a video in YouTube which shows what I’m talking about...

     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2019
  13. woodchucker

    woodchucker Cleared for Takeoff

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    We hang CDs in our garden area as well. If they scare anything off it’s a cheap win.
     
  14. MooneyDriver78

    MooneyDriver78 Pattern Altitude

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    Get the owls that move (heads turn with the wind IIRC), might make a difference.


    Tom
     
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  15. Grum.Man

    Grum.Man En-Route

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    I’ve had everything from head swiveling owls to rubber snakes trying to keep birds off my pool fence and nothing helped.
     
  16. write-stuff

    write-stuff En-Route

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    I use them around my cabin and it keeps the birds from crapping on the decks as much.
     
  17. Checkout_my_Six

    Checkout_my_Six Final Approach

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    the plastic owls work....if you move them every couple days.
     
  18. Fiveslide

    Fiveslide Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Not very well, in my experience around boats. I heard one marina had success playing recordings of injured and terrified birds. Where that audio came from, I don't know.
     
  19. flyingron

    flyingron Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Static owls and snakes don't seem to do a damn thing. What worked for us when we had bird problems in our tie downs is the "Scare Eyes" beach ball type thing. I hung it from a loop of safety wire I looped over the rotating beacon. Given the tiniest amount of breeze it and it's little streamers move around and MOTION is very key to keeping the birds away otherwise they just get used to your deterrent.
     
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  20. OkieFlyer

    OkieFlyer En-Route

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    They don't work for me. We put them up in our compressor buildings at work to help with the pigeons and starlings. It made no difference.
     
  21. benyflyguy

    benyflyguy Pattern Altitude

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    Get the Gods to bestow you Bubo

    3FDA4F4A-B2B6-49B1-B0FC-8D98C2BE158D.jpeg
     
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  22. David Megginson

    David Megginson Pre-Flight

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    Plastic owls keep the stupid birds away--they guarantee that all the bird sh*t on your plane will be from the smarter birds.
     
  23. Zeldman

    Zeldman Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I move my moving head owl everytime I walk by it, sometimes up to 6 times a day. Like I said earlier, the sparrows are still there but they are really jittery.

    Last night before I went to bed, I went in the garage and pounded on the studs and most of the birds flew out into the dark. I'll do that for the next 10 nights or so and see what happens.
     
  24. Gary

    Gary En-Route

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    In your case Adam, a few well placed foam plugs would work far better!
     
  25. Matthew

    Matthew Touchdown! Greaser!

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    My neighbors put one on their fence in an attempt to keep rabbits out of their garden. I came home one afternoon and hear a lot of squawking, and went around back to check it out. There was a juvenile red-tailed hawk on the fence, yelling and flapping his wings at the plastic owl. The hawk wasn't getting much of a response, which just made him more angry. The hawk popped over the owl and tried arguing from the opposite side and did this back and forth a few times until he finally gave up and flew away.
     
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  26. Ventucky Red

    Ventucky Red Cleared for Takeoff

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    Check out some of the stuff these guys have... I am seeing more and more of the 'bird spiders" at our local marina.

    https://www.birdbgone.com/
     
  27. Eric Stoltz

    Eric Stoltz Line Up and Wait

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    Walked around Lake Hood yesterday just to look at the owl perched on the top of the prop. This Cub hasn't moved in many moons and no bird poop anywhere on it. So it's settled. Plastic owls work. :)
     
  28. Matthew

    Matthew Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Our newest neighbor has a plastic owl on top of their swing set. It's the kind that has the swivel-head, but it's missing the head. Not sure how well it works.
     
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  29. weilke

    weilke Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Weeell, most of them will tell you that they are 'consultants', I wouldn't really call it work. They mostly leech off their wives.
     
  30. Checkout_my_Six

    Checkout_my_Six Final Approach

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    so....he's a stay at home Dad? o_O
     
  31. Old Crow

    Old Crow Filing Flight Plan

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    Many moons ago at BWI (I think it was BWI) my crew and I were outside waiting on the hotel bus when I looked up saw a seagull sitting on a fake owl taking a dump. Looking around there were a bunch more of fake owls I talked with one of the airport workers and she said the owls don't work worth a damn. Looking closely saw streaks down all of them.
     
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  32. David Megginson

    David Megginson Pre-Flight

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    Hey! I've been consulting for 21 years, and it's paid for my plane, paid for my house, and sent two kids to university. ☺️

    True, any fool can call themself a "consultant," but if you're doing it seriously, it's long hours and hard work—you have to be the operational staff, sales team, marketing team, accounting department, IT department, cleaning staff, and CEO all in one, and there's no holiday pay or sick leave—but the benefit is that you can slip out to the airport during the week when the weather's nice and it's not busy, then make up the hours later on a rainy evening.

    D
     
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  33. Ventucky Red

    Ventucky Red Cleared for Takeoff

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    sict weaks ago I kwouldent eben spelt consultant, now I are one :eek::D

    [​IMG]
     
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  34. David Megginson

    David Megginson Pre-Flight

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    dt980824dhc0.gif
     
  35. Bobanna

    Bobanna Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Studly. I wondered what all that noise was.
     
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  36. Zeldman

    Zeldman Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Where can one buy a fake owl taking a dump..?? :lol::lol:;)
     
  37. weilke

    weilke Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    It's a joke. Relax.








    And it's about folks who are too smart to work and claim to be consultants. It's not a joke about consultants per-se.

    Most of those 'consultants' are about as useful as a plastic owl taking a dump.
     
  38. Skyrys62

    Skyrys62 En-Route PoA Supporter

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    Meet the Fokkers
    That one's called an Ow!
     
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  39. Clip4

    Clip4 En-Route

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    A hangar with good doors works really well.
     
  40. LongRoadBob

    LongRoadBob Cleared for Takeoff

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    Birds are scared of good doors?
     
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