How to Get Rid of Doves

How to Get Rid of Doves
Gracie Owens
Gracie Owens she/her - Author at YardPrep October 01, 2023


How to Get Rid of Doves

To get rid of doves, start by removing any food sources that attract them, such as bird feeders or spilled seeds. Use deterrents like reflective objects, scare devices, or motion-activated sprinklers to discourage them from roosting or nesting. Seal any openings or gaps in your property to prevent them from entering. Consider using bird netting or spikes as physical barriers. Consult local regulations before attempting any lethal methods.

Doves are beautiful and peaceful birds that are often found in urban and suburban areas. While they may be a symbol of peace and love, their presence can sometimes become a nuisance. If you're wondering how to get rid of doves, this article will provide you with some effective and humane methods to deter them from your property.

Understanding Doves

What are Doves?

Doves are a type of bird belonging to the Columbidae family. They are known for their small to medium size, slender bodies, and distinctive cooing sound. Doves are typically gray or brown in color, with some species having patches of white or other shades. They are known for their gentle and calm nature, which makes them a popular choice for bird enthusiasts.

Types of Doves

There are several species of doves found around the world. Some common types include the Mourning Dove, Eurasian Collared Dove, and White-winged Dove. Each species has its own unique characteristics and preferences when it comes to habitat and food sources. Understanding the different types of doves can help you better identify and address the specific issues you may be facing.

Reasons for Doves' Presence

Attractions for Doves

Doves are attracted to areas that provide them with food, water, and shelter. They are primarily seed-eaters and are drawn to locations with ample food sources, such as bird feeders, gardens, and agricultural fields. Doves also require access to water for drinking and bathing. Additionally, they seek out areas with suitable nesting sites, such as trees or ledges.

Problems Caused by Doves

While doves may seem harmless, their presence can lead to various issues. One of the main problems caused by doves is their droppings. Their droppings can accumulate on surfaces, including buildings, vehicles, and outdoor furniture, causing aesthetic and cleanliness concerns. Doves can also damage crops and gardens by feeding on seeds and fruits. In some cases, their nesting habits can lead to clogged gutters or other structural damage.

Deterrents and Prevention

Non-Harmful Methods

When it comes to deterring doves, it's important to prioritize humane methods. One effective approach is to remove or limit their access to food sources. This can be done by using feeders with smaller openings or switching to seed types that are less attractive to doves. Additionally, keeping your outdoor spaces clean and free of spilled seeds or food scraps can discourage their presence.

Physical Deterrents

Physical barriers can be used to prevent doves from accessing certain areas. For example, installing bird netting or wire mesh can keep them away from gardens or crops. Placing spikes or other deterrents on ledges or flat surfaces can discourage doves from roosting or nesting. It's important to ensure that these physical deterrents do not cause harm to the birds or other wildlife.

Sound and Visual Deterrents

Doves can be deterred by using sound and visual cues that mimic natural predators or create a sense of danger. This can include playing recordings of predator calls or using scare devices like reflective tape or decoy predators. These methods can be effective in disrupting their roosting or nesting patterns and encouraging them to seek alternative locations.

Environmental Modifications

Modifying the environment can make it less appealing to doves. For example, trimming trees or shrubs near buildings can reduce potential nesting sites. Installing motion-activated sprinklers or other devices that create sudden movements or loud noises can startle doves and discourage them from frequenting your property.

Local Regulations

Before implementing any dove control measures, it's important to familiarize yourself with any local laws or regulations regarding wildlife management. Some areas may have specific guidelines or permits required for certain deterrent methods or relocation practices.

Ethical Practices

When dealing with doves or any wildlife, it's essential to prioritize ethical practices. This includes avoiding harm or unnecessary stress to the birds. It is recommended to always choose humane methods and to seek professional assistance when needed.

Professional Assistance

Consulting Pest Control Experts

If you're facing persistent dove-related issues or if you're unsure about the best course of action, it may be beneficial to consult with pest control experts. They can assess your situation, provide expert advice, and offer effective solutions tailored to your specific needs.

Wildlife Rehabilitation Centers

If you're concerned about the welfare of doves or if you come across injured or orphaned doves, contacting a local wildlife rehabilitation center is a compassionate option. These centers have the expertise to care for and rehabilitate injured or displaced doves, ensuring their well-being and eventual release back into the wild.


In conclusion, if you're wondering how to get rid of doves, it's important to prioritize humane methods that discourage their presence without causing harm. Understanding the reasons for their attraction and implementing deterrents can help address the issues they may cause. Additionally, being aware of local regulations and ethical practices ensures that you approach dove control in a responsible and compassionate manner. By following these guidelines and seeking professional assistance when needed, you can effectively manage dove-related concerns while respecting the well-being of these peaceful birds.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I get rid of doves in my yard?

To get rid of doves in your yard, you can try using deterrents such as reflective objects, loud noises, or motion-activated sprinklers. Additionally, removing any food sources and making the area less attractive for nesting can help discourage doves from staying in your yard.

How do you get rid of doves but not other birds?

To specifically target doves while sparing other birds, you can use deterrents that are less effective on non-dove species. For example, placing spikes or netting on surfaces where doves perch can discourage them without affecting smaller birds. It's important to choose methods that are species-specific and avoid harming other wildlife.

What does it mean when mourning doves hang around your house?

When mourning doves hang around your house, it could indicate that they have found a suitable habitat with food, water, and shelter nearby. They may also be attracted to bird feeders or other food sources. If you wish to discourage their presence, implementing deterrents and making the area less appealing for nesting can help encourage them to move on.

What deters doves from nesting?

To deter doves from nesting, you can try using physical barriers like netting or spikes on potential nesting sites. Removing any nesting materials and making the area less attractive by reducing food sources can also discourage doves from choosing your property for nesting. It's important to implement these measures before nesting season begins to prevent them from establishing a nest in the first place.

How do you keep doves away from your balcony?

To keep doves away from your balcony, you can try using visual deterrents like hanging shiny objects or wind chimes. Placing spikes or netting on ledges can also discourage them from perching. Removing any food sources and keeping the area clean can make your balcony less attractive to doves.

What are some natural ways to repel doves?

Some natural ways to repel doves include planting prickly or thorny plants around your property, as doves prefer open spaces. You can also try spraying a mixture of water and vinegar on surfaces where doves gather, as the smell can deter them. Additionally, providing alternative food sources away from your property can help redirect their attention.

Can scarecrows keep doves away?

Scarecrows can be somewhat effective in deterring doves, especially if they are designed to move or make noise. However, doves can become accustomed to scarecrows over time, so it's best to combine them with other deterrents for better results.