What birds do

Common infestations in Cape Town are either caused by Pigeons or Starlings. 

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Ornithosis, encephalitis, Newcastle disease, cryptococcosis, histoplasmosis, toxoplasmosis and salmonella are just a few of the illnesses spread by contact with pigeon droppings and dead pigeons, particularly harmful to humans with weakened immune systems.


Ornithonyssus bursa (Bird Mites)



Contact with humans usually occurs after birds gain entry to roof cavities via broken tiles or through unprotected eaves, of homes, to construct their nests in early spring or summer. However, some infestations also occur from birds roosting on the outside of dwellings such as window ledges or awnings. The mites feed on the unfeathered nestlings, as well as the adult birds, and the large amount of nesting material used by the birds provide the mites with an ideal environment in which to thrive. The mites have a short life cycle (approximately 7 days) and can rapidly generate large populations.

When the young birds leave the nest, or die, many mites (often many tens of thousands) are left behind in the absence of a suitable host, and these will disperse from the nest into and throughout the dwelling searching for new hosts. Most mites will die within 3 weeks without a blood meal from a bird host. They will bite humans they encounter but cannot survive on humans. 


As a result of their 'test biting' while searching for a new bird host, the mites inject saliva. This can lead to severe irritation with rashes and intense itching.


Not to mention how corrosive bird droppings are on your buildings paintwork!

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