When Do Birds Nest and What You Can Do to Stop Them​

When Do Birds Nest?

when do birds nestIn the UK, the bird nesting season typically falls between the months of February and August. Be aware that the bird nesting season can begin before and after this timeline. This is due to different species nesting at different times and depending on the temperature changes during the seasons. It’s important you employ humane bird control deterrents to ensure you’re not breaking any rules.

Can I Remove a Bird’s Nest?

when do birds nestThe Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 penalises those who attempt to remove or harm the habitat of nesting birds within their nesting season. If you notice a bird’s nest and you’d like to remove it, you must do so before February or after August (as stated in the European Habitats Directive 1992/Nesting Birds Directive).

Removing a Nest in Nesting Season

There are of course, many instances where trees and vegetation clearance must be carried out during nesting season. However, this work must be carried out by a company with adequate certifications and qualifications. It is the job of the bird control professional to asses the site and confirm that the work can be carried out safely and effectively – ensuring no nesting birds are harmed or disturbed during the work.

It is not uncommon for many ground vegetation (hedges, shrubbery) to be overlooked by tree surgeons and groundsmen. It is just as important to ensure adequate care and control measures are performed to ensure no nesting birds are inhabiting the area.

The same goes for the pruning or removal of any nearby trees – as work carried out on these trees may still impact birds nesting in adjacent trees (as it may lead to neighbouring nests becoming exposed to the elements, predation or abandonment).

Birds Nesting in Chimneys

when do birds nestThis is a topic we covered in a recent article. To summarise, removing a bird’s nest from a chimney is a labour-intensive job and should only be performed by a certified professional.

At no point should you ever attempt to light your chimney if you suspect birds have nested inside it. Lighting your chimney will likely cause disruption and harm to the nest, and you may face prosecution due to breaching the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981.

The Five Earliest Nesting Birds

It’s also important to be able to identify birds that are likely to nest early so you can take the appropriate nest prevention actions.


crossbill nestingCommonly found in conifer forests, they being breeding as early as January (sometimes even earlier). This type of bird, once they enter breeding season, are very mobile. Their diet is based off conifer seeds (hence why they nest in conifer forests).


raven nestingThe raven is one of the UK’s earliest nesters. Raven’s are loyal birds that pick a partner and stay with them for life, which means they spend no time finding a mate every season.

While ravens are easy to spot due to their size and talkative nature, they’re also incredibly clever, which means they’re capable of choosing nesting spots that are hard to spot and even harder to remove.

Long-tailed Tits

long-tailed tit nestingKnown for building impressive nests, these birds nest early but won’t lay eggs until April. The reason they nest so early is to collect enough food to feed their young before their main predators (tawny owls) begin their hunting season.

Grey Herons

grey heron nestVery easy to spot and commonly nest in tall trees (often 25m above ground level). They begin their nest preparations early February. As their young take roughly eight weeks to leave the nest, herons will nest for far longer than other birds.


blackbird nestingBlackbirds play it relatively safe with regards to their nesting patterns. There are some instances where blackbirds (and some other birds) will attempt to nest in January. However, this isn’t that unusual and is usually the result of a naive bird pairing testing whether it’s possible to breed at this time.

Bird Nest Prevention Techniques

There are a number of ways you can help prevent birds from nesting within your property without causing distress or harm. AMES specialises in providing and installing bird control appliances for several areas and bird types.

Bird Spikes

bird-spikes-close-upAMES provides and installs humane bird spikes to help deter birds from nesting and perching in targeted areas.

The main advantage of bird spikes is their extremely fast installation method and their discrete appearance. Our bird spikes are designed to look ‘invisible’, meaning they seamlessly blend in with your property.

The main benefits of our bird spikes are:

  • Preventing birds from nesting and perching on sills, ledges, rooftops etc.
  • Discrete and invisible design.
  • Spikes are made from the same material as our bird wire (BS 302 or BS 16 marine grade).
  • Swift installation guaranteed by our bird control technicians.

Bird Netting

bird netting coverageBird netting remains one of the most effective and non-invasive deterrent techniques. Bird netting’s primary purpose is to prevent pigeons and other birds from nesting in targeted areas. Bird netting is commonly installed in:

  • Car parks
  • Building ledges
  • Courtyards
  • Rooftops
  • Gardens and patios

Bird netting essentially denies birds access to specific areas you’re looking to protect. AMES’ bird netting is discrete, humane, quick to install and long-lasting.

Bird Wire

Post and wire bird deterrentIn a similar method to bird netting, bird wire provides a discrete and effective way to deter birds from nesting in targeted areas.

Bird wire is made up of nylon-coated, stainless steel tension wire held between brackets. Bird wire can be installed in almost any area, as they wire is designed to seamlessly bend around any architectural structure.

The main benefits of bird wire are:

  • Effective at preventing birds from nesting within almost all areas.
  • AMES’ bird wire is made from BS 316 marine grade, or BS 304 stainless steel and plastic (both are very long-lasting).
  • Installation is quick and easy thanks to our certified bird control technicians.

We also provide Larus bird wire which is designed to keep bigger birds from nesting (such as seagulls).

Don’t Let Nesting Birds Lead to a Fine

If you’re concerned about birds nesting around your property (and they’re causing you distress), there are several solutions you can look into. AMES provides a number of bird control methods that will deter birds from nesting in dangerous or annoying areas around your property.

If you’ve spotted a bird’s nest or you suspect you may have one, please call us today so we can safely and swiftly deal with the problem before it gets any worse.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *