How to Make a Bird Table Pigeon-Proof

  • By: CarlBroadbent
  • Time to read: 6 min.
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People have bird tables to attract a variety of birds to their gardens. They are usually looking for beautiful and unusual wild birds.

However, when pigeons come and take over the bird table, it deters other birds and keeps them away.

Your bird feeder will attract all kinds of birds, including pigeons. You can pigeon proof your bird table by protecting your bird table, adding a cage, choosing the right food, or choosing a bird table that prevents larger birds from landing on them. You should keep the area underneath clean as well.

Best Ways to Keep Pigeons off Your Bird Table

The most important thing is to find a way to keep pigeons away from your bird feeder while creating a desirable space for other wild birds.

Making a Bird Table Pigeon-Proof
Protect bird table

Keep an eye on it, and be willing to modify it when you need to. Take a look at some ways that you can keep the pigeons away.

1. Protect Your Bird Table

There are several ways that you can protect your bird table:

  • You can use chicken wire to surround your bird table, and leave one side with a hinge so that you can get into it. Make sure that you have holes in the chicken wire that are large enough for wild birds to get through. The pigeons will be blocked from entering.
  • Another option is to make a fence with wires or strings. You can hang them approximately 4 centimeters apart. This is a similar idea, as the spaces are large enough for the wild birds but too small for pigeons to get through.
  • You can also try bird spikes. They don’t harm the birds; they simply discourage them from landing.

Smaller birds are able to fly to the food, but pigeons will find another place to feed.

2. Add a Cage to Your Feeder

When you add a cage to your bird table, you can create a feeder that keeps pigeons and larger birds out.

You don’t need to buy anything fancy; you can use an upside-down hanging basket:

  • Make sure that it is the right size to go across the bird table.
  • You need to make sure that it is large enough that the pigeon can’t stick its head through the bars to eat.
  • You should also peg it down. You don’t want the pigeons to push it away, so make sure it is affixed to the bird table.
  • Keep the food to the center of the table where the smaller birds can get it.

3. Choose the Right Food

There are some foods that pigeons love, such as sunflower seeds, corn, millet, and other seeds that you will find in inexpensive seed mixes.

However, there are others that don’t interest them as much, including the following:

  • Sunflower hearts
  • Fat balls
  • Suet products
  • Nyjer seed

If you focus on a high-quality seed mix, you will be able to attract wild birds, but the pigeons will be less interested.

4. Choose a Bird Table That Prevents Large Birds From Landing

If you don’t have a bird table yet, you can buy one that is outfitted with spikes or another device to prevent large birds from landing on it.

There are a number of different options, but they are similar to the DIY versions mentioned above.

5. Clean the Ground Underneath Frequently

You should clean up the space under your bird table regularly.

If you let the mess or old food sit under the table, it will invite pigeons and other unwanted creatures, including mice, rats, or raccoons.

Ideally, you should clean it every day just before the sun goes down. The hulls from sunflower seeds make a big mess, and they attract pigeons and many other animals.

Try buying seed mixes that have seeds without shells.

This will cut down on the mess and the birds will eat more of the seed you put out. Other foods that pigeons don’t love are:

  • Larger pieces of fruit
  • Mealworms
  • Peanuts in the shell
  • Jelly

You will need to clean up the leftovers if you choose fruits or jelly.

They will attract squirrels and insects. However, pigeons won’t be interested in these foods.

Will Pigeons Frighten Other Birds Away?

In general, larger birds do frighten away smaller birds. They take over the bird seed, and they will take the best spots if they can. Pigeons are not as aggressive as blue jays and other larger birds, but smaller birds will stay away when they are around.

While smaller birds may not land on your bird table if the pigeons are three, there are times when a group of them will swoop down and annoy the pigeons until they leave.

There are some larger birds that actually will kill smaller birds, including crows, gulls, woodpeckers, herons, and a few others.

As long as you take steps to protect the small birds feeding on your bird table, this won’t be an issue.

Should You Feed Pigeons?

If you feed pigeons, you will attract more and more of them. They love junk food, such as sunflower seeds in the hull and corn. If there are too many pigeons in your area and you can’t get rid of them, you might consider feeding them with a plan.

Get an inexpensive seed mix for the pigeons and throw it on the ground away from your bird table.

Should you feed pigeons
Feeding pigeons

If your bird table is in the backyard, feed the pigeons in front.


Works Well: As soon as the pigeons come for food, put the bird seed out on your bird table. If you can’t get rid of the pigeons, this is a great compromise.


Final Thoughts

You can make your bird table pigeon-proof so that smaller, beautiful birds can enjoy feasting in your yard.

You can try several different ideas for pigeon-proofing your bird table, and then decide whether or not you need to designate a place to feed the pigeons.

Pigeons won’t attack or kill smaller birds, but they might take over your bird table. Pigeon-proof your table and choose the right food to keep pigeons away.

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