Pigeon Proofing of a Shopping Centre

At A Glance

Location: Guildford

Structure: Shopping centre

Problem: Pigeon prevention

Solution: Bird netting



White Lion Walk have had an ongoing pigeon problem for some time. Over the years, many attempts have been made to stop pigeons roosting on the ledges above both entrances to the shopping centre, all without success. Rapid Environmental Services were recommended by a previous client to propose a permanent solution to the ongoing pigeon problem.

The Problem

Despite many attempts to proof this structure, pigeons have still managed to gain access to the areas, mostly due to poor netting practices. Pigeons were also getting trapped behind the existing netting causing unnecessary suffering and complaints from the public. It also caused constant fouling and slip hazards on the pavements outside the entrances.

As this is a very busy shopping centre, work during opening hours was not possible and potentially dangerous, so all work had to be undertaken outside normal hours and in very specific timeframes.

The Challenge

The challenges faced were:

  • Installing a system with limited time and at night to prevent disruption.
  • Site safety – all safety measures need to be in place to protect our work force and the public.
  • Use of pedestrian traffic control equipment to cordon the working area.
  • Working at high level to gain access to tight and narrow areas of the building meaning the correct choice of MEWP was essential.
  • Removing old pigeon proofing, undergrowth and cleaning all the bird fouling on both the building and pavements below.
Rapid Environmental Services are very familiar in dealing with the list of requirements above, so a project schedule was arranged with the shopping centre and the local authorities for the footpath closures. Our experience in working with the local authorities allowed us to execute a solution to meet the timeframes imposed.

The Solution

Coordinating activities with the facility management teams was crucial, with all the activity in such a busy public area. Using the correct access equipment meant that our teams could be set up and working quickly and safely. We chose a track mounted MEWP to enable safe working and ease of installation.

Once the old netting and wire has been removed we installed a new netting framework to which the netting is fixed. Bird spikes were installed to stop any roosting on high ledges to prevent any fouling below.

Once the nets were fitted, we installed our own specially designed bird outlets which allows birds to escape from the netting structure in the event of a breach in the net in the future.

The Result

Since the implementation of our bird netting solution the site has been bird free and problem free. The client was very satisfied with the results and our approach to site safety and dealing with the local authorities for permits and licences – removing a problem from them.

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