Bangalore: The Blue Rock Pigeon. It’s the urban menace that is being seen as worse than the langurs that infest homes and offices across north India. The aggressive birds have now taken over most high-rises in the IT capital. And it’s not just their incessant bird calls that drive people insane. The bird’s sticky droppings pose a huge health risk to asthmatics and those with allergies. City residents have tried to stop the pigeon infestation by laying nets across their buildings, trying to shoo away pigeons that roost in the eaves, and placing additional iron grills across their windows.
The residents of Spartan Apartments on Richmond Road tried all this and more, but failed to dislodge the pest. In part, this is because the birds, whose natural habitat is a cliff face and feed on grain have taken over urban spaces and adapted to the high decibel environment by surviving on food, fed to them by residents, adding to their numbers.
Spartan residents however decided that enough was enough! Acting in concert with bird experts, they concluded that the birds were spooked by sounds of pigeons in distress and those of the predatory falcon. Bird experts installed a tape in a red box and placed them on window ledges. The sounds are emitted once every three minutes, with an ambient level that does not affect the human ear, only that of the pigeon’s.
And it worked like a charm. But… not for long. The pigeons have seen through this one too! The red acoustic box, they realized was no threat at all.
Sqn Ldr S S Mahesh, CEO of Grus Ecosciences, who has developed the prototype, said that while a 60% reduction was noted after the first trials, new sounds were being added to the ‘scare away the pigeon’ repertoire.