It was a typical Tuesday afternoon, I had returned to my dorm room after a long day of classes and labs. Okay, I had two classes and one lab, but for a college student, that’s a lot. Anyways, that is most definitely not what this story is about. I had returned home, and all I was looking forward to was taking a nice three-hour nap before I had to go to work. I had it timed out perfectly so that by the time I got home and actually fell asleep I would be able to sleep for three hours and have 45 minutes to get ready for work and get there with ten minutes to spare. As a med student, this hardly ever happened. Unfortunately, my dreams were about to be crushed. I walked into my dorm to see my roommate quietly studying in the other room, headphones in. Peace and quiet, just what I needed. I had just put my bag down and fell onto my bed when all the sudden: RATTATATATATATAT!!! I shot up in my bed, what on earth was that sound?! I walked over and peeked into my roommate’s bedroom, but he was still diligently studying. Deciding it was probably just someone passing by, I went back to my bed to resume my nap. I couldn’t have been asleep for more than a few minutes when again I heard: RATATATATATA. I jumped up out of my bed and marched out into the hallway to see if some passing frat boy was just being dumb, but no one was there. I resumed my spot on the bed, this time staying diligent, with the intent of catching whoever was making the sound. I was only silent for a few moments and again came the sound RATATATATAT. It was coming from outside my window! I ran to the window and threw it open and when I looked down, I identified my attacker. It was a red and black spotted woodpecker. The bird looked up at me, I was sure it felt guilty about drilling into the stucco of my dorm building. Because I knew just how destructive woodpeckers could be, I immediately called our building attendant to take care of the mess. Unfortunately, I never got my nap.
No matter what I do, I just can’t stop the woodpecker noise. I can’t handle it anymore. I’m losing sleep, and I can’t afford to do that. I go to school full-time and I work part-time. Several times a week, I have a two-hour commute to work. I’m exhausted and I need help. Can you get rid of the woodpeckers?
I rent this top-floor apartment. It’s not huge, but it’s what I can afford, and I can’t afford to move. My landlord said he can’t (or won’t) take care of the woodpeckers, because they haven’t come inside the building, so he doesn’t have to do anything. I’m desperate, which is why I’m contacting you, so you can get rid of the woodpeckers and I won’t have to put up with woodpecker noise anymore while I try to sleep, or do homework, or just relax at home.
There are three or four woodpeckers, and they’re bold suckers. There’s no sign of rotting wood, and the landlord has checked for termites, so I have no idea why they insist on pecking, pecking, pecking on the roof. I’ve tried to scare them away, believe me.
I tried just banging on the walls and ramming a broom handle up against the ceiling. At first it scared them away for a little bit, but they always came back. Now, they’re used to it, and I guess they figured out that noise won’t hurt them, so they don’t even fly away when I bang on the walls and ceiling.
Then, I tried spraying them with water. That was about as effective as banging on the walls. I put out foil and reflective tape, and they just ignored it, like it wasn’t even there. The most effective thing I did was hang a picture of a big owl out on the deck. They stayed away for about three months after that, but now they’re back.
Finally, I tried, I really tried, ignoring them. But, that insistent tap tap tap tap tap woodpecker noise wakes me up early in the morning. I don’t even bother studying at home anymore, because the noise drives me nuts and I can’t focus on what I’m reading. I’m worried there are insects crawling around on the inside of the wall that they’re trying to get at. I’m worried they’re making big holes which will let other animals, like mice, get in. If they make holes all over the roof, I worry that someday I’ll wake up with rain falling through the ceiling onto my stuff. I’m sick of worrying. I’m sick to death of the woodpecker noise. I’m desperate enough to consider moving, even though I really can’t afford getting out of my lease right now and finding another place. All I want is the woodpecker noise to stop. Please come and get rid of the woodpeckers, and maybe I’ll stop going insane inside my own apartment.
I swear, if we don’t get rid of those woodpeckers, I might just go insane. Not funny insane, like in the old cartoon show, but actual crazy angry. I’m all for bird watching, going on long hikes in the mountains and looking for deer, and leaving things in their natural habitat. But, my house is my house. What’s wrong with the woodpeckers around here? Why can’t they enjoy the many, many trees on our property? Or, how about the berries out by the creek that runs through our back yard? The other birds seem to like it just fine, and find enough bugs to feast on. So, why can’t they? Maybe it’s time to just get rid of woodpeckers if they can’t play nice.
I’ve got a nice home on a quarter-acre lot, which is perfect for me. Instead of opting for an expanse of grass that I’d have to mow as I get older, I went for a more natural, forested look. Every year, I plant tulip bulbs and daffodils out under the mature trees on our property. In the evening, I sit out on the deck of my small home and listen to the creek burbling and watch the birds flitting, and I sip my drink and think I’ve got a wonderful life. I even put out a couple of bird baths, a hummingbird feeder, and a few bird houses and feeders to make the wild life feel welcome.
And, if I’m ever going to enjoy watching birds from my deck again, I must get rid of woodpeckers.
They start out early in the morning, when I’m trying to sleep in. A knock-knock-knock against the roof above my bedroom. I run outside to try to scare them off, but they just fly into a nearby tree and pretend nothing happened. As soon as I get back inside, the knocking starts up again.
And, they do help themselves to the berries. That’s sure. Wanna know how I know? There are reddish streaks decorating the side of my home. Right next to the holes appearing in the stucco. If it was just the knocking noise that bugged me, I wouldn’t care so much. But, destroying my house in the process? Come on.
I don’t want to kill them, don’t get me wrong. I just want to get rid of the woodpeckers. But, I can’t figure out how. And, I’m angry, too. I’m sure they have access to plenty of bugs in and around the trees. Why does my home attract them more than their natural habitat? Is it the warmth? I can’t figure it out, and I can’t scare them away.
A friend told me that Allstate Animal Control will send an expert out to my house to get rid of the woodpeckers. Not only that, but they could get someone to fix the damage the woodpeckers caused. Now that’s service.
So, a quick phone call, an appointment scheduled, and maybe I’ll be able to enjoy my quiet little haven once again.
A woodpecker in our tree is a science lesson, but a woodpecker on the house is a disaster. My two children love our little science projects. I’m the kind of mother who’s more worried about the cleanup than the project itself. If it’s messy and the kids are happy and learning, then it’s completely worth it. So, we make rain storms in bottles and water splashes on our floor that has to be mopped up. We make dinosaur tracks and toy car tracks through colored salt dough, that dries up into tiny little specks that have to be vacuumed. We liberally sprinkle glitter and feathers over art projects covered in glue. My preschool-aged children adore learning, and are starting to get to the point where they are asking endless questions about the world around them. I don’t mind cleaning up after my children’s science projects. I do, however, mind cleaning up after the woodpecker on the house.
We were straightening up the front room, getting ready for a playgroup, when I spotted the woodpecker on our tree in the front yard. It was beautiful, with spots on its chest and a red crest. I couldn’t believe my luck, since I had just taught the children about woodpeckers two days earlier. I excitedly called them over to the window, and we spent fifteen minutes watching the woodpecker listen for bugs in the tree, then confidently tapping away and grabbing the bugs up in its beak. The front room didn’t get straightened up to my usual standards before the playgroup showed up, but it was worth the chance to watch nature.
Then, when we all went outside to play, I was chatting with one of the other mothers and noticed small black specks on the side of my house, up by one of the second story windows. Coming down from the black specks were streaks of brown and reddish black. The woman I was talking with told me they had the same thing. “You have a woodpecker on your house.” Now, I was all excited to see the woodpecker in our tree this morning, but thinking of it pecking small holes into the side of my home, and bird feces staining the side of the house, really annoyed me. Just an hour before, I had thought of the woodpecker as a stately and interesting bird, and shared my love of nature with my children. Now that I know that woodpecker was on the house, possibly we even had a woodpecker in the house, it became a nuisance that must be taken care of.
Unfortunately, I also knew that most woodpeckers are protected. I couldn’t just pull out the bee bee gun. If only it had been content in my tree, I would have been just fine. But, a woodpecker on my house is an entirely different matter. Time to call Allstate Animal Control, since they get rid of birds, too. Science lessons are great, but not when they’re destroying my home.
I own several office buildings in and around this area, and I’ve noticed that one of my buildings needs some woodpecker control.
In my line of work, my office gets calls all the time for various building maintenance needs. Office managers, company owners or even employees of the companies that rent various office space from me will call about anything from a leaky toilet to a malfunctioning light switch. I get complaints that their customers don’t like the heaviness of the doors, or employees are too hot in the afternoon, or the sprinkler system for the landscaping isn’t working properly. Some of these calls are silly nonsense, most of them are minor and easily handled, but some are pretty major.
When three different tenants from one of my buildings called, I paid attention. One of my top-floor tenants had a few employees complaining about tapping and noises coming from the wall. Another tenant said he’d noticed a woodpecker clutching the side of the building and “going to town” on the stucco. Another tenant mentioned the ugly holes that had started appearing on the side of the building.
I went there myself to investigate, and sure enough, we needed woodpecker control. From the front of the building, I could easily see a few holes in the stucco, and some of them had large red streaks of woodpecker droppings staining the façade. Around the side of the building, I saw a much larger, gaping hole close to the roof. I couldn’t believe it. It was large enough that a medium-sized dog could crawl through it into the building . . . of course, the dog would have to crawl up the side of the three-story building to get there, but you know what I mean. I heard raccoons can easily get up to the roof of a building, and wondered if we had raccoon problems in addition to the woodpecker.
But, one thing at a time. I whipped out my cell phone and got my secretary on the line. I told him he needed to get a really good woodpecker control service out to this office building, and to make sure it was a service that would get rid of the woodpeckers, clean up the mess, repair the holes, and look for signs of raccoons while they were at it.
Within fifteen minutes, I got a call back from my secretary telling me that he got Allstate Animal Control to send someone out and inspect the damage and give us a quote. I went inside the building and talked with the owners of the companies renting space from me. I reassured them that the woodpecker control was, well, under control. Of course, then I had to sit and listen to a laundry-list of other complaints. I’ll take care of the woodpecker control first, and then I’ll worry about the type of flowers planted out front. Sheesh.
How do you get rid of woodpeckers when your home is under attack by a woodpecker with an anger management problem? Look, these nice people and I have an understanding. They provide me with a hollow box with an opening just big enough for me to get in and out of, and a protected space inside that is perfect for my nest. The hole is too small for most predators like larger birds or squirrels to steal my eggs, I’m safe from the wind and rain, and when my babies hatch, they can peep out of the opening and wait for my return with juicy worms. In return, I give the people a nice nature show, since they like to carefully ooh and aaah over my eggs and watch me jump and leap and fly. Occasionally, they even sweeten the deal with some delicious bird seed they throw outside.
It’s been absolutely wonderful, until this crazy bird came around. Now I have to worry about how to get rid of woodpeckers. For some reason, it thinks that it should live in my bird house, just because it’s bigger or flashier or has a harder beak than me. Those aren’t good enough reasons! I was here first. Plus, these people want me here, not some stupid woodpecker.
But, it’s going absolutely nutso on me. It’s pounding on the walls and the ceiling, and I have to keep on my toes to keep from getting skewered. Really! Won’t these people do anything to get rid of woodpeckers? If they want me around so much, they need to make sure I stay alive long enough to lay eggs. It’s just a big bully.
I think it must have overheard me telling someone about my wonderful nesting site. I didn’t mean to brag about it. It’s just so exciting to have found a safe and easy place in which to build my nest. Now, I can just spend my time looking for soft building materials and eating as many grubs and worms as I can find instead of wasting all my energy flitting from one site to the next, hoping to build a home there.
The woodpecker must have followed me back, though, because, no sooner did I get home with some excellent twine to add to my nest than the pounding and pecking and hammering began. As if the noise isn’t bad enough here inside my hollow box, every time I stick my head up, the woodpecker’s beak nearly skewers me. And, now I’m trapped inside. I can’t get out, because there is no let-up in its frenzied attack. It just keeps going at me and at my box. Does this woodpecker just want me to die of fright so it can get me out of here and come in? I doubt she can even fit inside the hole. At least I hope she can’t.
Why, oh, why won’t these people get rid of this woodpecker? If it ever leaves, I may have to leave and find a more secret and safer site, and then they won’t have any sweet little baby birds to watch as they hatch and learn how to fly. Serves them right!
I would have expected cats to be great at woodpecker removal. I was wrong. At least with our cats. They are no help whatsoever.
We’ve lived in this house for eight years, and for five of those years we’ve had problems with woodpeckers. I have no idea why they’ve chosen our house to attack. Our home is pretty much like every other home on our block full of stucco- and brick-faced two-story houses. The neighborhood is almost a decade old, and you can still tell which houses were built first by looking at the height of the trees in each yard. We’re a subdivision with young trees and lawns still struggling to establish dominance over weeds. So, I can’t figure out what would attract woodpeckers out to our little area of the world. I assume they would be more interested in well-established neighborhoods, with lots of tall trees and foliage.
But, we have struggled with woodpecker removal nearly every year. For some reason, our house gets attacked every spring. By the end of the summer, we’ve patched up a lot of woodpecker holes and inspected our attic to make sure nothing else has crawled inside. Many mornings, we wake up early to the drum-drum-tap-tap of a woodpecker drilling holes into our beloved home.
We’ve tried a lot of things, from the ugly giant plastic owl screwed onto our roof to spraying the birds with water anytime we hear them out there. They ignore the owl and return once the water has dried. Don’t tell anyone, but my husband’s gone out there with the air gun and shot pellets up at the birds in an effort to scare them away and let them know we mean business. They still come back. It’s like they know they’re protected under the law and my husband isn’t allowed to kill them.
And our cats are worthless at woodpecker removal. The birds ignore the cats chattering and mewling on the ground. I would have expected, however, that they would have at least kept the woodpeckers out of our house.
So, you can imagine how surprised we were when we walked in the house to find a woodpecker sitting on the kitchen floor. It flew up onto a high plant shelf once it saw us, and then eyed us, irritated. Our two cats were nowhere to be seen. When we looked for the cats later, we found them sleeping soundly on our forbidden bed, happy as can be.
But, we still had a woodpecker in the house. How had it gotten inside? Had it been in here before? All of a sudden, we were faced with removing a woodpecker from out of the house, not just off of the house.
I called Allstate Animal Control and we had a woodpecker removal technician come out to the house. He admitted he’d never seen something like this happen before, either, but the woodpecker just sat there, on the plant shelf in my kitchen, watching us, proof that the unexpected does happen. And, proof that cats are worthless at home protection.