Non-paying “Parkers” Causing Real Problems

Pigeons on a parking garageBy William R. Conner, CAPP

Hey, anybody out there have any solutions to a pigeon problem in a garage?

The problem was noticed last spring on level one of the garage around the exit. Pigeons were roosting on the beams above the exit gates and depositing all their droppings on the ground below. We contacted the local pest control folks, first to clean up and then devise a prevention solution.

The initial idea was to capture the birds and release them outside the city. Catch and release did not guarantee they would not return. So the pest control company set up cages along the beams to collect the birds. Baited the cages and waited … waited … for about four months. Smart birds–the traps only captured one (another one was released by a customer). This also prompted a visit from the city animal control officer.

With capture and release not an option, the next idea was to what they called spike-and-slope. This would place spikes on the flat parts of the beams and pipes. We started with levels one through four, but the birds kept moving upward and  we ended up doing levels five through eight as well.

Well, we still have the problem. Our last option is to screen in the open floor–unless someone out there has another idea?

William R. Conner, CAPP, is assistant director, parking services, for the Public Parking Authority of Pittsburgh.