Barn swallows??

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Barn swallows??

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  • Barn swallows won't leave me alone
  • Keep barn swallows away

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    10-27-2010, 04:25 PM
Barn swallows??

How do you keep them out of your barn and if you do end up with them, how do you get rid of them. I have heard of putting ribbons or whirlyjigs in the rafters but I would like to know what actually works before I get my new barn.
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    10-27-2010, 04:28 PM

Black racers and black rat snakes will keep them away.

I don't have any birds in my barn, although you can see the dried out nests where they tried to build before the snakes found them.

I have barn swallows, but they don't nest in the barn.
    10-27-2010, 04:33 PM
Hm, how would that work with dogs and horses in the barn? Can the snakes get up into the rafters to get the birds?
    10-27-2010, 04:45 PM
What kind of dogs? Rat terriers may go after them, but most dogs just leave them alone.

Yep, snakes can get up into the rafters. I found one of 'my' black racers hanging out under the highest part of the barn roof on a rafter.

Black racers and rat snakes are nonvenomous and shy, so they'll rarely bite unless cornered. The bite is supposed to be painful, but it won't really hurt you.
    10-27-2010, 04:49 PM
Huh, I may have to look around and see if I can find some. The dogs are border collies though one or two of them have been known to kill snakes, most leave them alone.
    10-30-2010, 12:40 PM
Giving them somplace else to nest might help. Put up some gourd houses. They really are good for helping with insects. They love when I bush hog and sweep back and forth in front of the tractor picking up insects that fly up. Its fun to watch.
    10-30-2010, 12:44 PM
Someone commented earlier about snakes, if you might be scared of snakes then use fake snakes, just put em around the barn and it might scare the birds away. But real ones might be a better chance.
    10-30-2010, 06:25 PM
Barn swallows are good to have around. They eat tons of mosquitos and other bugs. I know the poop piles they leave under the nests are a pain, but they are well worth it! We use to put old cardbord boxes ( beer flats) under the nest so it was easy to clean up

If I remember correctly from what my grandparents use to tell me, barn swallows are considered a sign of luck and/or prosperity to the Swedish
    10-31-2010, 10:34 AM
Green Broke
I have a huge colony of swallows in my barn every year. I don't love having them there, as per the poo factor, and I knock down any nests near my hay, but frankly I love what they do to the bug population, so I have ultimately (if somewhat reluctantly) decided while the pigeons get chased away, the bats and the swallows can stay. It is great fun to be followed by a flock of swooping swallows when I mow the pasture. Makes me feel a little Dr Doolittle or something. Lol

But as far as keeping them away, the only real tips I have ever gotten are as follows:

One way is to just keep knocking down the mud nests they build, and they will eventually get frustrated and move on. Note this has to be done before eggs are laid - while I doubt many people follow it, once eggs are laid, you can not harm the birds or disturb the nest, as swallows are protected by federal law.

I've also been told that placing fake rubber snakes in your barn rafters keeps them away.

A friend of mine had the best luck with painting her barn rafters with a garage-floor epoxy type paint. This might be a reasonable solution for you, since you are building a new barn from the ground up and can include this in the building plans - swallows need a rough surface for their nests to stick to. If all the rafters and such are painted with a slick coating, there is no way for the swallows to attach their nests.

Good luck!
    10-31-2010, 10:38 AM
I don't even have a barn for my horse. Well I do but it's run down and stuff, hasn't been widely used in 20 years when my mom used to have tons of horses. So I wouldn't really know about the barn swallow issues. But it'd be pointless to build a new one cause my mom is giving me our horse when I get on my own and I'm a senior in high school so in the next few years I will be own my own.

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