Birds are a beautiful and essential part of nature. Larks are just one of the wide variety of birds that call Colorado home. Unfortunately, while there is much to enjoy about larks and other birds visiting your home, they are often a headache for homeowners. Knowing lark control methods helps homeowners prevent and reduce the threat of the mess and damage pesky birds cause.
Colorado Is Home To More Than One Type Of Lark
When referring to Larks, multiple birds fit the bill in Colorado. The Horned Lark is the only true lark found in the United States. However, lark often refers to the Lark Bunting, Colorado’s state bird, and the Western Meadowlark. While these species differ significantly, lark control tips cover these birds and most other birds that frequent homes.
The Distinctive Horned Larks
Horned Larks are a member of the Alaudidae family. They range in size from 5 to 8 inches. While their body is an earthy brown or tan, the males have bold head markings. They have black masks and chest bands with white or yellow cheeks. Additionally, males have black feathers that can rise and lower on the sides of their heads, resembling horns.
Horned Larks spend much of their time on the ground. They forage for food, including seeds and insects. Also, females prefer nesting on the ground. They will even use their feet or beaks to create an ideal area. Therefore, Lark control measures are necessary when an abundance of Horned Larks are on your property.
Lark Buntings – Colorado’s State Bird
The Lark Bunting is familiar to many Coloradans. As the state bird for Colorado, the Lark Bunting is widespread across the Great Plains. As a member of the sparrow family, this species has a sizeable cone-shaped beak used to eat seeds and insects. Furthermore, like most sparrow species, they travel in large flocks and require lark control measures when they come to stay.
During the breeding season, male Lark Buntings are solid black with bold white stripes on each wing. In the winter, they change to resemble the more earthy tones of females. Females are brown with white feathers mixed in and have a white stripe on their wings.
Boldly Colored Meadowlarks
Another bird that might prompt lark control or removal is the Meadowlark. This bird is comparable in size to the Robin. They have long legs, bold patterns of color, and a beautiful warble call. These birds have long and slender bills used to eat a large variety of insects and seeds. They spend much time foraging on the ground and usually fly short distances at low elevations.
Meadowlarks boast eye-catching yellow underbellies and throats. They have a thick black ‘V’ across their breast. Their back and wings appear speckled with dark brown and tan feathers. Like many species, females are less vibrant than males.
Birds Pose A Threat To Your Home
While having birds around the home can be enjoyable, they also bring immense frustrations. Larks pose a threat to houses, garages, and other buildings. Like general bird control tips, lark control focuses on areas susceptible to damage. Typical damage includes broken siding, clogged gutters, and surface damage from droppings.
As with any pest control, early identification of a lark problem is key to preventing an infestation. When you notice an influx of larks, it is time to evaluate your property for early signs of damage. One of the easiest ways to pinpoint where to begin your search is to notice where the birds congregate. Additionally, watching their flight path will lead you back to their nests.
At-Home Lark Control Methods
Expecting to rid your property of all larks and other birds is unrealistic. However, many DIY bird control methods will help reduce the number of birds frequenting your yard. But, effectiveness is often temporary and requires repeated application. Therefore, contacting professionals experienced in lark control is the most productive approach.
Bright Lights Deter Larks
A common at-home method of bird control is bright flashes of light. The easiest way to achieve this is to use shiny objects. Hanging objects such as old CDs, tinfoil, or metallic yard ornaments use the sun to distract the birds. In addition, the bright flashes discourage larks from returning as the objects move and catch the sun.
Lark Control Using Predator Sounds
Another sound-based form of lark prevention is the use of predator sounds. Using recorded sounds of predator birds, such as hawks and owls, as well as bird distress calls, will alert pesky larks that the area is unsafe.
In addition to these noises, using owl or hawk decoys will ensure that larks see the area as dangerous. But larks and other birds will become accustomed to repetitive noises and unmoving predators. Thus, relocating the decoy and having a device that uses multiple sounds will yield more effective results.
Using Sound To Scare Birds Away
Another way to discourage larks and other birds is by using sound. There are a variety of noises that scare birds away. The easiest and most common lark control sounds are ultrasonic and predator sounds.
Ultrasonic Devices Repel Birds
These gadgets use high-frequency ultrasonic sounds that humans do not hear. Because birds have sensitive hearing, they find these noises unpleasant. Ultrasonic devices are also easy to find at outdoor and hardware stores. However, ensure the device is geared toward birds and will not harm or irritate pets and other animals.
Physical Barriers For Lark Control
When sound is not enough to scare larks away, physical barriers are the following line of defense. These prevent birds from landing and nesting. Two of the most common physical barriers are bird netting and bird spikes.
The use of bird netting prevents larks from entering specific locations. Nets are beneficial in keeping larks out of gardens and flowerbeds but ensure they cannot become entangled. Meanwhile, bird spikes help prevent larks from roosting and nesting in particular areas. Placing these small metal spikes makes it uncomfortable for bids to land, encouraging them to find alternative resting places.
Additional Lark Control Tips
In addition to using sound deterrents and physical barriers, several practical preventative measures exist. The use of exclusion will stop a lark problem before it starts. The key is to make your home and yard less enticing.
- Remove bird feeders and water sources to eliminate easy meals.
- Perform insect pest management to keep insect populations to a minimum. Many birds, including larks, feed on abundant insects.
- Monitor the area regularly and remove nests as larks build them. Stopping a nest before it gets completed encourages larks to find new nesting sites.
- Cover vents and repair cracks and openings in siding and eaves. Seal any openings larks can use to gain access to your home.
Professional Lark Control Is The Way To Go
Undertaking lark control efforts on your own is a continuous and daunting task. A professional pest control service takes the guesswork out of how to proceed. Call our knowledgeable company, OMNIS Pest Control, which ensures you receive the greatest results with the least effort.