Animals & Your Roof: What’s the Risk?

Worried about birds or other animals damaging your shingles? Here are the top offenders, and why these animals are so dangerous for your rooftop!

Sparrows: You may not think these small birds pose much of a threat to your home, but they love to build nests in your eaves and along your roof – and those nests are trouble. Not only can the nests block vents and gutters when you need them most, but they also tend to attract bugs and long-term moisture, creating damaged spots along your roof. Get rid of these nests quickly!

Starlings: All bird droppings are bad news for your roof: Bird poop is highly acidic, and stains your shingles while also eroding their protective layers (not mention the smell). However, starlings are infamous for some of the worst bird dropping problems around. These messy, dark-colored birds tend to fly in large flocks, so when one descends on your roof 20 others often join it. That’s a lot of bird crap! Fortunately, starlings don’t often stay around for long, but they can do a lot of damage while they are there.

Woodpeckers: The good news about woodpeckers is that you can often hear them drumming on your chimney or vents, so they are rarely a surprise. Everything else about this animal is bad news: Woodpeckers can be particularly destructive as they hammer at your roof looking for bugs, sounding mating calls, or creating roosting holes. Those holes can easily turn into leaks! If you have a lot of woodpeckers in your area, ask roofing professionals about guards and deterrents you can use to prevent problems.

Crows: Crows are big, curious birds who can create several problems on your rooftop. First, they may build their large nests in your chimney or on your roof vents. These nests need to be cleared away before they cause safety problems. Second, these large birds have large droppings, which can quickly build up over time. However, the worst problem may be their tendency to peck, yank, and pry anything they can while exploring. This can cause widespread damage to your shingles. There are repellents you can use to help control them.

Raccoons: When people think of raccoons, they often think of basement or attic problems. They rarely think of problems associated with the outer roof. However, raccoons will try to gain access to dark, warm spaces anyway they can – and the shortest route to your attic is right through your shingles. If you notice a surprisingly large hole that looks like it’s been gnawed or ripped into your roof, you know the animal responsible – call an exterminator.

Squirrels: Remember, squirrels are rodents…and they love to gnaw on everything. An energetic squirrel will gnaw on your shingles, your vents, and even your lead flashing, causing widespread damage. Keep trees far away from your house to help stop squirrel problems.

Photo Source: Flickr

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