How To Keep Birds Out Of Fountains

Last Updated on September 13, 2023 by Susan Levitt

Birds are magnificent creatures that can add a touch of beauty and grace to any landscape. However, when it comes to fountains, their presence may not always be welcome. Not only do birds leave behind droppings that can spoil the aesthetics of your fountain, they can also damage its components with their sharp claws and beaks.

As an ornithologist or avian wildlife specialist, I understand how challenging it can be to keep birds away from fountains without harming them in any way. Fortunately, there are several humane methods you can use to discourage feathered visitors from using your fountain as their personal spa. In this article, we will explore some effective techniques for keeping birds out of fountains so you can enjoy the tranquility of water features without worrying about unwanted guests.

Understanding The Problems With Birds In Fountains

Birds are incredibly fascinating creatures that have been around for over 150 million years. They play a crucial role in the ecosystem and help maintain balance within it. However, their behavior can be problematic when it comes to fountains. Birds are attracted to water features because they provide a source of hydration, but also because they like to bathe and preen themselves in shallow pools of water.

Unfortunately, birds can cause significant environmental impact on fountains due to their droppings. Bird feces contain high levels of uric acid which is corrosive and damaging to fountain surfaces. The accumulation of bird droppings not only affects the aesthetics of the fountain but also poses potential health hazards as it may harbor harmful bacteria or viruses.

It’s essential to understand bird behavior when considering how to keep them out of fountains. Certain species such as ducks or geese might view fountains as attractive nesting sites during breeding seasons. Additionally, some birds tend to congregate around areas with abundant food sources, so if your fountain has nearby bird feeders or fruit trees, you’re more likely to encounter bird activity.

To prevent these issues from occurring, homeowners must take proactive measures to deter birds from entering their fountains. Fortunately, there are various methods available that can discourage birds from landing and roosting on the fountain’s edges or basin. In the following section, we’ll discuss some design elements that could make your fountain less attractive to birds while still maintaining its aesthetic appeal.

Choosing The Right Fountain Design To Deter Birds

As the saying goes, prevention is better than cure. This holds true when it comes to keeping birds out of fountains. While understanding the problems with birds in fountains is crucial, selecting the right fountain design can prevent them from becoming a nuisance.

Eco friendly designs are an excellent option when it comes to deterring birds in your fountain. These types of fountains not only save water but also provide less surface area for birds to perch on and defecate in. Additionally, choosing a fountain that has moving water will make it more difficult for birds to land and stay on its surface.

Cost effective options such as adding netting or wire mesh around the fountain’s perimeter can be just as effective at keeping birds away. However, these methods may not aesthetically blend well into your landscape design. It’s important to choose a method that not only works best but also complements the overall look and feel of your outdoor space.

Using visual deterrents to scare birds away can also be an effective solution. The use of reflective objects like shiny tape or metal pieces placed strategically near the fountain can help keep pesky avian visitors at bay. Remember, while there are numerous ways to deter birds from fountains, paying attention to their habits and behavior patterns will lead you towards finding the most suitable options for your needs.

Using Visual Deterrents To Scare Birds Away

Visual deterrents can be an effective way to scare birds away from fountains. There are several types of visual deterrents that can be used, including reflective tape, balloons with eyes painted on them, and fake predators like owls or hawks.

Reflective tape is a popular option because it creates flashes of light that disorient the birds and make it difficult for them to approach the fountain. Balloons with eyes painted on them also work well because they resemble predator eyes and scare birds away. Additionally, fake predators like owls or hawks create the illusion of danger in the area which makes birds avoid it altogether.

The effectiveness of visual deterrents varies depending on the type of bird species present around your fountain. Some species may be more easily frightened by these types of deterrence than others. It’s important to experiment with different types of visual deterrents until you find one that works best for your specific situation.

Employing sound-based deterrents can also be an effective strategy for keeping birds out of fountains. By using a combination of visual and sound-based methods, you’ll increase your chances of successfully deterring unwanted avian visitors from disrupting your outdoor space.

Employing Sound-Based Deterrents

As the old saying goes, prevention is better than cure. This adage rings true when it comes to keeping birds out of fountains. One of the most effective ways to deter them from landing and perching on your fountain is by using sound-based deterrents.

Birds are sensitive to sound frequencies that humans cannot hear. Ultrasonic devices produce high-frequency sounds that can be irritating or even painful for birds, making them avoid the area around your fountain altogether. These devices emit a constant stream of ultrasonic waves that create an uncomfortable environment for birds without harming them in any way.

It’s important to note that not all ultrasonic devices are created equal. Some are designed specifically for deterring birds while others may have different purposes like repelling insects or rodents. Make sure you choose a device that is intended for bird deterrence and has been proven effective through testing.

Another consideration when using sound-based deterrents is placement. The location and direction of the device should be strategically chosen based on where the birds tend to perch or land near your fountain. Proper placement will ensure maximum effectiveness and prevent wasted energy usage.

While sound-based deterrents can be highly effective at keeping birds away from your fountain, they do require some maintenance and upkeep over time. It’s essential to regularly check the batteries and replace them as needed, so they continue emitting ultrasonic waves at full strength.

By employing sound-based deterrents, you’ll create an uninviting atmosphere for birds trying to invade your fountain’s space. However, if these methods don’t work effectively enough, it may be necessary to move onto creating physical barriers to keep birds out – which we’ll discuss in our next section.

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Creating Physical Barriers To Keep Birds Out

As we discussed in the previous section, sound-based deterrents can effectively keep birds away from fountains. However, there are alternative solutions that can be equally as effective. One such solution is creating physical barriers around the fountain to make it difficult for birds to perch or land on.

Physical barriers can take many forms, including netting and spikes. Netting should be tightly woven with small openings to prevent birds from getting tangled up in it. Spikes, on the other hand, should be made of a durable material like stainless steel and placed strategically around the perimeter of the fountain where birds tend to congregate.

In addition to physical barriers, natural remedies can also be used to deter birds from approaching your fountain. Citrus oils and hot pepper wax are two examples of natural bird repellents that work by emitting an unpleasant scent or taste that birds find unappealing.

While these methods may not completely eliminate all bird activity around your fountain, they will certainly help reduce their presence and protect both your property and the health of local avian wildlife. In our next section, we’ll discuss implementing bird repellent sprays as another option for keeping unwanted feathered visitors at bay.

Implementing Bird Repellent Sprays

Types of repellent sprays can be an effective way to keep birds away from fountains. There are two main types of bird repellent sprays: chemical and natural. Chemical sprays often contain methyl anthranilate, which irritates the birds’ eyes and respiratory system. Natural sprays, on the other hand, use ingredients such as peppermint oil or garlic extract to repel birds.

When using bird repellent spray, it is important to follow safety considerations. Wear protective clothing such as gloves and goggles when handling any type of spray. Also, make sure to read the label thoroughly before use to ensure proper application and storage.

It’s important to note that although repellent sprays can be effective in keeping birds away from fountains, they may not work for all species of birds. Some birds may become accustomed to the scent or taste of a certain spray over time.

In addition to using bird repellent sprays, another method for deterring birds is through predator decoys. By placing fake predators near your fountain, such as owls or hawks, you can trick birds into thinking there is danger nearby and discourage them from approaching.

Using Predator Decoys To Trick Birds

After implementing bird repellent sprays, it is important to consider using predator decoys as another effective means of keeping birds out of fountains. Birds are wary of predators and will often avoid areas where they perceive danger. By placing realistic-looking predator decoys around the fountain area, such as a fake owl or hawk, birds may be deterred from approaching.

Effective placement of these decoys is crucial for success. It is best to position them in areas where birds typically land or perch before entering the fountain. Placing them on nearby trees or poles can also help create an illusion of surveillance and keep birds away. However, it’s essential to change their location periodically to prevent habituation by the birds.

One thing to note when utilizing predator decoys is that not all species of birds will be fooled by them. Therefore, it’s recommended to use a variety of different types of decoys that mimic various natural predators found in your region. This technique has been proven successful in many situations and could be beneficial for keeping unwanted feathered visitors away from your fountain.

While using predator decoys can help keep birds away from fountains, it’s also important to provide alternative water sources for them. Providing fresh drinking water elsewhere on your property can help satisfy their needs without the need for them to enter your fountain area. In addition, providing food sources like bird feeders located far enough away from the fountain can also encourage birds to stay clear while still being able to enjoy their time in your outdoor space.

Providing Alternative Water Sources For Birds

I’m an expert in avian wildlife, so I’m here to discuss how to keep birds out of fountains by providing alternative water sources. Constructing bird baths is a great idea for providing a safe, reliable source of water for our feathered friends. Additionally, providing bird-friendly bird feeders can also help to supplement their diets and create a safe place for them to get food. In conclusion, these steps can help to ensure that birds have the resources they need to survive.

Constructing Bird Baths

As avian wildlife specialists, we understand the importance of providing alternative water sources for birds. Water is essential to their survival and it can be difficult for them to find clean, fresh water sources in urban areas. One great option is constructing bird baths using DIY projects.

When constructing a bird bath, it’s important to consider the materials used as well as its design. Opt for bird friendly materials such as ceramic or concrete instead of plastic which can easily crack and harbor bacteria. The depth of the basin should also be shallow enough to prevent drowning but deep enough to allow birds to bathe comfortably.

The location of the bird bath is just as important as its construction. Place it in an area that provides natural cover from predators while still allowing easy access for birds. Providing nearby perches will also give birds a place to rest and preen after bathing.

Overall, constructing a bird bath can be a fun and rewarding project while also benefiting local bird populations. By taking these considerations into account, you can create a safe and inviting space for our feathered friends to enjoy.

Providing Bird-Friendly Bird Feeders

As avian wildlife specialists, we understand the importance of providing alternative water sources for birds. However, water is not the only essential element that they need to survive. Food is also crucial in their daily diet which is why bird-friendly landscaping should be considered when creating a habitat for them. One way to do this is by providing bird feeders.

When constructing or choosing a bird feeder, it’s important to consider its design and materials used as well as its placement. Opt for safe birdhouses made from natural materials such as wood instead of plastic which can easily crack and harm birds. The size of the feeding ports should also accommodate different types of birds while preventing squirrels and other animals from accessing it.

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The location of the bird feeder is just as important as its construction. Place it in an area where there are nearby trees or shrubs that will provide cover from predators but still allow easy access for birds. It should also be positioned away from windows to prevent collisions.

Providing a variety of food options such as suet cakes, seed mixes, and fruit can attract more species of birds to your yard. By incorporating both a bird bath and a bird feeder into your backyard habitat, you can create a safe and inviting space for our feathered friends to enjoy year-round.

Maintenance Tips For Long-Term Bird Control

Regular maintenance is key to keeping birds out of fountains. The build-up of debris such as leaves, twigs and algae can create an attractive environment for birds seeking water or food sources. To prevent this, it’s important to regularly clean the fountain basin and surrounding area.

Fountain cleaning should be done at least once a week or more frequently if necessary. This involves removing any debris from the fountain basin, scrubbing the sides with a soft brush, and replacing the water. It’s also crucial to remove any bird droppings that may have accumulated on the edges or nearby surfaces since they can attract other birds.

In addition to regular cleaning, maintaining good water quality is essential in deterring birds from entering your fountain. Poor water quality attracts insects which are a major source of food for many species of birds. Using algaecides or adding chlorine tablets to keep the water clear will help reduce these insect populations resulting in fewer visits by unwanted feathered guests.

Overall, keeping birds out of fountains requires frequent maintenance and proper care. By following these tips, you can enjoy a beautiful outdoor feature without worrying about its impact on local wildlife populations. Remember that taking proactive steps towards long-term bird control not only benefits your community but helps protect our natural resources too!

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I Use Any Type Of Bird Repellent Spray On My Fountain?

As an ornithologist, I must say that bird repellent sprays are not the ultimate solution to keep birds away from your fountain. While they may work for a short period, they pose health risks to both humans and animals if used excessively. Alternative deterrents such as visual and auditory devices can be effective in keeping birds at bay without causing harm. Natural deterrents like predator decoys or reflective surfaces can also dissuade birds from landing on your fountain. Remember, prevention is better than cure – install netting or covers atop your fountain to prevent birds from entering it in the first place!

Is It Safe To Use Predator Decoys To Scare Birds Away From My Fountain?

Using predator decoys to scare away birds from fountains can be an effective method for some, but it is not a foolproof solution. While they may work initially, the effectiveness of decoys tends to decrease over time as birds become accustomed to their presence. Additionally, using decoys can have unintended consequences such as scaring off beneficial wildlife or creating a false sense of security that could lead to increased bird activity in other areas. Alternatives to decoys include physical barriers like nets or spikes and repellent sprays specifically designed for use around water features. Ultimately, finding the right solution depends on identifying the specific species causing problems and taking appropriate measures to deter them without harming them or other animals in the process.

Will Providing An Alternative Water Source For Birds Actually Keep Them Away From My Fountain?

Providing alternative methods of hydration for birds may seem like a logical solution to keeping them away from fountains, but it is not always effective. Birds are attracted to water movement and the sound of trickling or splashing water, making fountains an appealing option. However, placing a bird bath or other source of standing water nearby may distract some birds from your fountain. It’s important to note that this method can also attract more birds to your yard, potentially leading to increased noise levels and mess. Ultimately, incorporating predator decoys or altering the design of your fountain may be necessary for long-term bird control.

How Often Should I Clean My Fountain To Prevent Birds From Being Attracted To It?

As the wise saying goes, "cleanliness is next to godliness." This holds true for your fountain as well. Regular cleaning is key in preventing birds from being attracted to it. The frequency of cleaning depends on various factors such as the size of your fountain and the amount of bird activity in your area. As an ornithologist or avian wildlife specialist, I recommend cleaning your fountain at least once a week to ensure that there is no buildup of algae or debris which can attract birds. Additionally, make sure to keep surrounding areas free from any leftover food or seeds as they also serve as a draw for birds. Following these fountain maintenance tips will not only prevent unwanted avian visitors but also keep your water feature looking beautiful and healthy for all to enjoy.

Are There Any Legal Restrictions On Using Certain Bird Deterrent Methods, Such As Sound-Based Deterrents Or Predator Decoys?

As an avian wildlife specialist, it is important to consider the legal considerations and ethical concerns surrounding bird deterrent methods. While sound-based deterrents or predator decoys may seem like effective solutions, they must be used responsibly and within legal guidelines. It is essential to research local regulations before implementing any type of deterrence method. Additionally, we must always prioritize the well-being of birds and avoid causing harm to them through our actions. As stewards of nature, it is our responsibility to ensure that our efforts to keep birds away from fountains do not have unintended negative consequences on their populations.


In conclusion, as an avian wildlife specialist, I recommend a combination of methods to keep birds out of fountains. While bird repellent sprays may be effective in the short term, they can harm both birds and fountain materials if used excessively. Predator decoys can also work well but should be moved regularly to prevent habituation.

Providing an alternative water source for birds is a humane solution that may help reduce their attraction to your fountain. However, it’s essential to remember that regular cleaning is crucial for preventing bird droppings from accumulating and attracting more birds. As the saying goes, "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure." By taking proactive measures like these, you can enjoy your fountain without worrying about unwanted feathered visitors.

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