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Bird Harassment

R.P..R

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Hello gang,

Momentarily, I am on the secondary stages of negotiation with a local commercial pest management company, who handles the Levis San Francisco 49ers stadium, as well as the new Chase NBA Warriors stadium, who they are looking into utilizing a drone to deter birds from areas of human and structures.

As we all know that Parent birds may abandon a nest if they’re disturbed repeatedly. Even one disturbance can leave their chicks temporarily vulnerable to predators. And flushing birds while they’re roosting or feeding makes it harder for them to build up the energy reserves for successful breeding and migration. The company has used a falconer, but they deemed it to be none efficient and costly, and so is where I come in.

After my initial meeting with the pest management company, I did a personal flight study to note the behavior of the birds (the pigeons of San Francisco ) especially on their defensive characteristics and I've learned that the pigeons (not a scientific study) usually takes off headwind, and land downwind similar to an aircraft and they are also fast in making turns left or right and swift when maneuvering a quick dive, but slow to climb to an altitude. After learning their characteristics, I've created a flight path, according to the wind direction and their flight characters that I hope this will eliminate the possibility of a mid-air collision.

But, again. I only have so little experience and one flight is not enough to base assumptions or create a concrete study. So my question are...... Has any of you been contracted to do this type of job? I will be partnering with @Al Diaz aka bigdz on this job, and he recommends utilizing our DJI enterprise drone to emit predatory sounds over the speakers, would this be beneficial? I know this job will not be a one-time solution, so I have opted for a progressive 1yr or a 2yr contract, but I have to create a case study, and safety procedures to present to the company.

Any ideas are welcome and I thank you all in advance.
 

BigAl07

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First off we TRY to not land our planes "downwind" as tailwinds make things a bit more difficult. We take off and land into the wind as best we can.

I would imagine using the correct Predatory call work have some affect on nesting/roosting birds. Unfortunately they often "learn our habits" and eventually become "comfortable" with our processes.
 

R.P..R

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First off we TRY to not land our planes "downwind" as tailwinds make things a bit more difficult. We take off and land into the wind as best we can.

I would imagine using the correct Predatory call work have some affect on nesting/roosting birds. Unfortunately they often "learn our habits" and eventually become "comfortable" with our processes.
Typo. Tailwind.

This is what I am afraid of, and this is what the falconer also told the company that city birds are smart, and this is why I modeled the contract being progressive because the stadiums do not want to use bird spikes that will alter the look of the building or chemicals.
 
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MapMaker53

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I'm having a hard time picturing how a drone will be able to fly around a huge stadium and disturb the birds enough that they will prefer to give up their comfortable and weather-protected roosts that are tucked far up under the overhanging multi-level stadium stands. Shortly after you make your pass, I think they will return to their nests, and I'm not sure you will be able to disturb them often enough to make a difference. Birds can be pretty determined, especially pigeons who seem to be able to get used to anything. But I wish you good luck and hope it becomes a successful business endeavor for you.

My advice to the stadium owners would be to try using a series of mounted bright LED strobe lights in the locations where the birds nest. The flashing strobe I use on the top of my P4P seems to deter curious birds. As much as it causes annoying flash spots in my own eyes when I accidentally look at it, I imagine it is worse for a bird that has a much keener eyesight than I have. Seems to really throw them off and they don't like it one bit. It would be an easy experiment for the stadium to conduct a limited pilot test at single location where birds were nesting before expanding the program under all of the stands. Naturally, the system would be turned off during games. Just a thought.
 
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PatR

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The best defense against pigeons is a shotgun. Next in line would be a high pressure water cannon catching them roosting at night.

If they aren’t being killed outright the best anyone can hope for is a momentary relocation. Trying to dislodge and deter them is like protecting the rats and homeless in San Francisco, Portland, Seattle, and Los Angeles. Any protections provided only increases their numbers.
 

R.P..R

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I'm having a hard time picturing how a drone will be able to fly around a huge stadium and disturb the birds enough that they will prefer to give up their comfortable and weather-protected roosts that are tucked far up under the overhanging multi-level stadium stands. Shortly after you make your pass, I think they will return to their nests, and I'm not sure you will be able to disturb them often enough to make a difference. Birds can be pretty determined, especially pigeons who seem to be able to get used to anything. But I wish you good luck and hope it becomes a successful business endeavor for you.
Pigeons usually congregate or build a home in certain section(s) and areas of a structure. The prone areas are usually where food are available. Clark a wide known pest management and are using falconers, but there are certain limitations to using a falcon that only a drone can possibly do, and this is what my client is looking into as a possible remedy, because they know by experience that harassing/deterring birds is a long process.
 

BigAl07

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Yes "City Birds" are very adaptive. I can't go into specifics but I was part of a project here in town (not drone related) and the birds learn to recognize my car... I mean specifically my car. I could drive a different car into the area and they didn't flinch. I drive my "Tactical Subaru" anywhere near the area and the entire community takes flight.

What I learned is that if conditions are favorable for long-term nesting the "nuisance" will most likely work short term and the nesters will eventually leave. Then foragers etc will locate this new "vacated" nesting grounds and repopulate several times a year. That's how it has worked here for our project for a few years now. We remove the population and within 6 weeks we see more coming into the area and we start from ground zero again.
 

R.P..R

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The best defense against pigeons is a shotgun. Next in line would be a high pressure water cannon catching them roosting at night.

If they aren’t being killed outright the best anyone can hope for is a momentary relocation. Trying to dislodge and deter them is like protecting the rats and homeless in San Francisco, Portland, Seattle, and Los Angeles. Any protections provided only increases their numbers.
That’s funny, because they are not allowed to use anything that will possibly hurt the birds.. lol **** conservatives, because I would like to buy a rifle BB gun.

Shoot!!! When I was growing up in Kauai, we used slingshot to harass the chickens of Kauai (reasons why I try to avoid chickens, I’ve eaten a lot growing up.. lol)

The client has been maintaining the Levi’s 49er stadium in Santa Clara, which is easier to maintain vs. San Francisco. I am also glad that this will be a progressive approach for me and Al that will hopefully bring a consistent paycheck.
 
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Phaedrus

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Several years ago my RC club was looking for a new field. We came upon the idea of using a closed section of a large local landfill with the ides being harassing the birds like gulls, etc.

We set up an area to fly from to test the concept out. The landfill operator was very keen and cooperative. Long story short, the birds acclimated to our planes very quickly and it did not take long for them to stop being scared away by our planes.

The landfill folks decided since there was no advantage for them that they would not let us build a flying site there.

Other issues were the amount of real estate that need to be covered along with the amount of time in the air required to be an effective deterrent to the pesky birds.
 

PatR

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RPR,

I think you meant conservationists, not conservatives. A conservationist will spend $millions or $billions of other peoples’ money in attempt to preserve something that serves no purpose or that could have been repurposed to make money instead of cost money. A conservative would be more likely to kill the birds and find a way to turn additional profit on sales of the carcasses.
 
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R.P..R

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RPR,

I think you meant conservationists, not conservatives. A conservationist will spend $millions or $billions of other peoples’ money in attempt to preserve something that serves no purpose or that could have been repurposed to make money instead of cost money. A conservative would be more likely to kill the birds and find a way to turn additional profit on sales of the carcasses.
I meant what I said... California (SF) law makers of are both.
 

PatR

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I think the rest of the country would say California law makers are extremely liberal, a position shared by most conservationists.
 
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R.P..R

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UPDATE: Right now, we are on a stalemate, I am trying to educate these guys about safety, and why I am giving a certain progressive rate of $650.00 for two calendar flights per month for 1yr and $500.00 if they can guarantee a 2yr contract. It's hard to negotiate folks outside of the construction industry... SIGH! How do you guys do it? lol
 

PatR

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It can be tough. Bean counters have a value factor for everything and if your fee reaches about 30% of their factor they’ll shop your service for another. Perhaps suggesting the seats covered in pigeon chit be reserved for company execs instead of the public might move them in the right direction. Or mention the liability expenses of an avian flu outbreak...
 

BigAl07

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UPDATE: Right now, we are on a stalemate, I am trying to educate these guys about safety, and why I am giving a certain progressive rate of $650.00 for two calendar flights per month for 1yr and $500.00 if they can guarantee a 2yr contract. It's hard to negotiate folks outside of the construction industry... SIGH! How do you guys do it? lol

You could compile an invoice for every item you use (tablet, aircraft, batteries, chargers, Transmitter, landing pad, Hot Spot on phone, Internet Connection, Insurance, PrePlanning, Risk Mitigation etc, AirrSpace Authorization Submission), each gets it's own hourly rate, then factor in travel expenses, Administrative expenses, and associated expenses and give them an itemized rate of $1,000/flight and let them figure out which one they want to go with.

Sometimes an extravagant "itemized" bill get more attention.
 

Phaedrus

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I would be very careful about the time and materials approach of overly itemized bills. It only gives the bean counters more beans to count.
 
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