A revolution in bird management technology, Bird Free repels birds using a clever optical illusion. 

Roosting and nesting birds can create a disturbance through their noise and a mess through their droppings. They can also represent a source of significant health problems. Although there are a range of bird exclusions products available, some can be unsightly such as bird spikes and others lose effectiveness over time – birds can become habituated to some audio and visual repellents. Bird Free Optical Gel is a discreet and long-lasting bird repellent, and is now available in Australia.

Bird Free is a unique, solid gel formulation pre-dosed into dishes that repels birds by tapping into their innate avoidance behaviour to fire. Bird Free contains unique polymers that reflect ultraviolet light, which to birds appear like a flame.

Kane Millerd from Bird Free Australia explained how it works: “Placing Bird Free dishes on buildings requiring protection causes birds to veer away and land elsewhere. For longstanding roosts, they may try and return for a day or two before vacating the site for good. The site then remains bird free for as long as Bird Free remains in place.”

Mr Millerd has carried out a lot of the Australian trial work on Bird Free. “It really is a unique technology. To see it work first hand is quite amazing. Not only does it repel the birds, it keeps on working for extended periods. Here in Australia, we have trials sites that are still bird free after two years. The product has been on the market in Europe and the Middle East for some time and some sites have remained bird free for significantly longer,” said Mr Millerd.

Bird Free is a solid gel, pre-dosed in dishes for quick and easy placement. The robust formulation allows the dishes to be placed on vertical surfaces, even upside down, in temperatures up to 50 degrees without running.

“Bird Free has proven to remain effective in hot and dusty conditions, which is vital for success in Australia. Sites have remained protected for extended periods in Dubai – not a cold place – and many of the registration trials in Australia were carried out at mine sites. While the gel may discolour and pick up some dirt, the gels still remain effective,” said Mr Millerd.

Greg Hall from Greg Hall Pest Control in Newcastle was confident enough to try Bird Free on a high-profile new building for Knight Frank Australia, with Newcastle City Council being the main tenant on completion.

“Even before the building had been finished and before we arrived, the pigeons had already got in, making a mess of the building and footpath.

“We decided to go with Bird Free for this job based on its discreet profile and ease of application. Bird spikes were immediately discounted from an appearance point of view and bird netting was excluded due to access issues, so Bird Free was the ideal solution. Getting council approval was easy.”

A Bird Free installation at Helsinki train station

It is important to ensure all surfaces are clear of nests, droppings and other organic debris prior to installation. Failure to do so will impact product performance. The use of biocidal cleaners is highly recommended. When cleaning nests and droppings, full PPE should be worn and steps taken to prevent dust and spray getting airborne and exposing members of the public to potential disease transmission.

Bird Free is available in two different dishes, the standard dish and a magnetic version. The standard version is applied to surfaces with a quick dab of silicon and the magnetic version, with its strong magnet built into the dish, allows for quick and easy placement on metal surfaces.

Bird Free dishes can easily be attached to poles and pipes with zip ties

“The product is so easy to use. We had to use an abseiler to apply the product to the outside of the building. After only a quick ten minute briefing the abseiler quickly understood what was required and was away applying the product. And we had confidence it would be applied correctly,” said Mr Hall.

Mr Hall believes Bird Free also has ongoing benefits in reduced maintenance costs. “Netting may need to be repaired as it can get damaged over time, especially in high wind and bird spikes will often need cleaning – and in this case with the additional expense of an abseiler.

“The discreet low profile of Bird Free also means that window cleaners do not have a problem doing their job – a bit tricky if they have netting or bird spikes to work around.

“The job proposal indicated a protection time of 2-3 years and the client was very happy with this duration of protection, accepting the building would need a potential re-treat at the end of that period. The combination of discreet profile and performance is a winner,” concluded Mr Hall.

Currently Bird Free is only registered for use on pigeons but an extended label to include other bird species is pending registration approval (due later in 2019).

Bird Free is exclusive to Globe Pest Solutions.

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