Blog: Gas guns / bird scarers - are you a good neighbour?


The NFU’s Tom Price looks at how to make gas guns work more efficiently as a bird deterrent - and to limit any nuisance they may cause.

He writes:

Gas guns are an essential part of the tool kit available to farmers to help control and limit the damage caused by birds. They are can also be something which can be a nuisance to neighbours if they not used responsibly.

Getting it right...

 Some simple steps to help make gas guns more effective and to limit any disturbance include:

  • Using them as part of a range of pest control measures
  • Thinking about location – place guns as far away as practicable from neighbours, point them away from neighbours and use baffles
  • Thinking about timing – avoid using them before 7am or after 10pm – and alter timings to take account of seasonal changes. As a general rule never use before sunrise or after sunset
  • Avoiding use on Sundays – try an alternative method
  • Checking timers work and are set correctly. If using a photoelectric cell check that it is clean and preferably have a mechanical timer as well as a backup
  • Ensuring that your neighbours know who to contact if the gun develops a fault so that it can be put right
  • Using guns as part of a range of measures so that their effectiveness is not reduced by prolonged use
  • Following the NFU code.

    The NFU code is often used by local authorities as a source reference for their guides on the use of gas guns. By adhering to it farmers can help make themselves good neighbours, reduce complaints of nuisance from the public and limit avoid any enforcement action by local councils.

    The NFU Bird Scarers Code of Practice is available here.