Learning Center
Critters in the News

  • "Wild Pigs are becoming
    larger and  more
    aggressive"-                   
    DISCOVERY CHANNEL
  • "House Fire in
    Altemonte Springs
    caused by squirrels"-
    ORLANDO SENTINEL
  • "Raccoons attack
    woman in Lakeland"-
    TAMPA SUN TIMES
  • "Rats overrun Orlando
    International Airport
    despite efforts to
    erradicate them"-   
    LAKE MARY REPORTER
  • "New Orleans 2 Year Old
    dies from blood loss
    caused by rat bites"-      
    PCT MAGAZINE
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As the animal experts, critter911
has been on the news
repeatedly... click a white rat
below to see us on your favorite
news station
news video of us trapping & removing wild pigs in Lake Nona, FL
news video of exotic animal pest control in Mount Dora, FL
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Birds

Bird problems are common and have a wide range in Central Florida. There are numerous bird species that can invade and
have a negative impact on Central Florida residences and businesses.

The most common problematic species of birds in Florida are:

  1. Pigeons (columbia livia) – commonly found everywhere in the United States, the pigeon is a problem in city
    atmospheres due to their unsanitary eating habits and the massive amount of droppings created when the
    populations rise. Pigeons are characterized by their dull grey body colour, two black stripes on each wing and a pale
    green-blue coloured head.
  2. Starlings (stumus vulgaris) – a common bird to the entire east coast of the U.S., starlings are known for entering
    buildings and making nests in rafters or inside the attics of residences. Starlings are typically black, sometimes with
    white specks, and small with longer, dark-coloured beaks.
  3. Thrushes – there are many kinds of thrushes found in Central Florida. They are primarily insectivores that feed off
    the ground. Because of their low feeding habits, thrushes have been known to dive into people who are in the way
    of a meal. Thrushes found in Central Florida are small-to-medium sized, plump birds with soft feathers. Blackbirds and
    robins are examples of thrush species found locally.
  4. Peacocks (pavo cristatus) – in some areas of Central Florida, such as Winter Springs and Oviedo, groups of wild
    peacocks survive in the residential zones. They typically avoid human contact but in large numbers can leave large
    amounts of droppings in lawns and on streets. Peacocks also make very loud noises during mating seasons to attract
    mates. Male peacocks are unmistakable: large birds that are mainly blue with different tints of reds, yellows &
    greens. Female peacocks (peahens) are typically grey with pale hints of the colours of their male counterparts.
  5. Muscovy Ducks (cairina moschata) – these ducks are a huge nuisance to Central Florida wildlife. Muscovy ducks are
    an invasive species that find their way into the habitat of ducks that are indigenous to Florida and do not migrate.
    This habit quickly makes the habitat unfit to live for any ducks but muscovys, killing off Florida’s natural wildlife.
    Muscovy ducks are relatively large ducks, with plump black bodies with patches of white and a deep red mask.

Habitat

Any and all areas of Central Florida are susceptible to any of these bird-pests. Pigeons, starlings and thrushes typically
inhabit wooded areas but will move into high buildings, attics, bridges and rooftops in developed areas. Once any of these
species move in, the amount of droppings may reach hazardous levels and illness then becomes a danger. Peacocks have
mainly been found in residential areas of Central Florida where development and traffic are a little-to-non-factor. Muscovy
ducks, however, can be found at almost any pond, creek or other body of fresh water in Central Florida.

Food Habits

All of these birds are omnivorous but feed mainly on insects. Pigeons, especially, are known as garbage eaters and will feed
from anywhere they can find food, including garbage cans, dumpsters, or the ground. Muscovy ducks are lucky enough to
be fed bread or corn by humans in many situations but doing so causes great damage to the surrounding ecosystem by
making a better, more prosperous habitat for the muscovys.

Reproduction and Development

Peacocks and muscovy ducks are polygamous as opposed to the monogamous pigeons, thrushes and starlings. Regardless of
how many partners these birds typically mate with, they are all known for being parts of large populations. Pigeons in
specific aren’t the most prolific birds, laying only 2 eggs per brood as opposed to the muscovy’s 8-16. However, pigeons can
breed twice a year, at any time.

Foraging Behavior

Like most birds these pests are diurnal, active in feeding and foraging during the day and sleeping at night. Muscovy ducks
spend most of their time on the banks of the bodies of freshwater that they inhabit, peacocks are ground-dwelling birds
that stay out of the sky while pigeons, starlings and thrushes spend most of their time at higher altitudes, such as trees and
buildings, and only come down to eat.

Bird Senses

  • sight- birds have fairly high senses of sight and the majority of their success in hunting is based on their keen eyes.
  • smell- the sense of smell plays little-to-no part in most birds’ lives.
  • hearing- birds also have an acute sense of hearing and use it to communicate with other birds.
  • touch- birds have a well developed sense of touch and have touch receptors found all over the body with the most
    sensitive found on the bill.
  • taste- a bird’s sense of taste is less developed than other animals and used mainly to distinguish if a food source is
    safe or not.

Signs of Bird Infestation

  • dogs or cats paying undue attention to the attic, wall voids and crawl spaces.
  • droppings, urine, or tracks on the roof, lawn, walkways and walls.
  • hearing bird songs inside the walls or attic.  
  • flu and/or allergy like symptoms including asthma, bronchitis & other respiratory ailments.
  • recurring parasitic infestations of the home or business (primarily fleas and ticks).

Diseases

The most dangerous aspect of bird infestation is the amount of disease infecting these animals themselves and their
droppings. Histoplasmosis and cryptococcosis are serious diseases carried by all of these bird-pests as well as other birds
not listed. Also, the bird flu (avian influenza) is known to have been found in pigeons, and although it hasn’t been a problem
in the U.S., the disease has been reported numerous times overseas and can be lethal.
Questions to ask other Wildlife Control
Professionals:
  1. Insurance...can they provide proof of
    Workers Comp & Liability Insurance?
  2. Licensing... can they provide proof of
    Pest Control & Trapping Licenses?
  3. Are they members of the BBB?
  4. Are there "hidden fees" such as per
    animal, per visit, per trap or per week
    fees?
  5. Do they guarantee their work for at
    least 10 years?
  6. Do they accept credit cards?
If the answer to any these questions are
not satisfactory, call
bird911 today at
407-699-4567
667498
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