Proper prebaiting and baiting is crucial to your success when using Avitrol. The following links are included to help you with your Avitrol baiting operation. Before undertaking an Avitrol prebaiting/baiting program, read the label(s) and comply with all label requirements.

Study Period

Prior to undertaking the dispersion of nuisance flocks of birds using Avitrol, the operator should study the situation to evaluate a number of factors which will help determine the procedures to be followed. The following factors should be determined:


     • What are the approximate number and species of birds?
     •Are the birds resident or migratory?
     •What are the approximate flight patterns of the flock(s)?
     •Where are the flock(s) feeding, roosting, and loafing?
     •What foods are already available to the birds, and where?
     •What are the most logical places and times for feeding/baiting?
     •What precautions may be necessary to protect other birds, wildlife, pets, and people        from hazards which may arise from baiting with Avitrol?

Note: Rather than endangering a protected species, it is usually best to cancel the entire operation. If the question of such a hazard exists, consult the appropriate authorities for advice.

Birds that react and alarm usually die. If the applicator believes that adverse publicity may arise as a result, he/she should discuss this with the client before proceeding.

Pre-Baiting

Pre-baiting with untreated grain of the same composition as the Avitrol carrier is necessary to establish acceptance for the bait and to establish acceptable feeding/baiting sites. Attention to normal feeding times is also desirable to assure the presence of most of the target flock at the time of baiting, so that when affected birds begin to react, the maximum population will witness the reactions.

One of the most important aspects of pre-baiting is getting the flock accustomed to feeding on the chosen bait. After several days' experience of feeding on untreated bait, the flock will not, upon application of blended Avitrol treated bait, associate the alarm signals of reacting birds with the bait, which has "proven" itself safe for several days. Rather, they will believe the site itself to be "unsafe", and will leave the "unsafe" site. This aspect of pre-baiting may be less important where, for whatever reason, birds are already feeding on grain similar to the Avitrol carrier. Even so, pre-baiting is advisable and is an inexpensive way to determine non-target feeding habits, and to establish acceptable feeding/baiting sites and times before administering the blended Avitrol treated baits.

Continue pre-baiting until the majority of the flock is readily accepting the untreated grain.

Baiting:

Both baiting and prebaiting is best done at sunrise. Birds will eat more at their first feeding than any other time of day. The bird's metabolism is at its highest in the morning and as a result will succumb to Avitrol Treated Grain more readily. In laboratory testing, if the dose is lethal, death will usually occur within an hour following administration. If the dose is sub-lethal, there will be a recovery period which may be as short as 4 to 5 hours. Surviving birds have no lasting effects from 4-aminopyridine.

Always follow all directions on the Avitrol label(s), (including, but not limited to, those already there for blending and placement of baits) for the product being used and the specific pest bird.

Clean Up

Dead or reacting birds in public areas may be an alarming sight to the general public. It is best to gather and dispose of dead birds regularly, especially if adverse public reaction is anticipated. As required by the label, when using Avitrol pick up and dispose of dead birds by burial or incineration.

Follow Up

For pigeons and house sparrows, repeat baiting and clean-up operations on successive days until the target population ceases to return to the treated area, or until acceptable population control is attained. After the initial treatment period, when results appear promising, baiting applications may be made less frequently. To avoid adverse public reaction, it may be necessary to wait several days before rebaiting. If so, you must pre-bait again before rebaiting.

Pigeon Specific:

Pre-Baiting: Whole corn may be desirable for use with pigeons because it is too large to be accepted by many non-target species and because one kernel is a near perfect dose for an adult pigeon. However, in some instances, small mixed grains may be the preferred bait.

Careful observation of the proposed treatment site will provide an estimate of the numbers of birds involved and their patterns of use. Around buildings, a survey should also be conducted to determine the numbers and locations of nesting pairs. Pigeons that are nesting and feeding young are strongly attached to an area; if feasible, nests should be pulled down after the initial baiting cycle with the blended, treated bait.

Baiting: One hundred pigeons will eat from 7.5 to 10 pounds of grain per day. This will help determine the quantity of bait required for pre-baiting and baiting. The operator should use his/her ingenuity in developing baiting techniques which best suit the local situation. For the control of pigeons in urban areas, excessive bird mortality is not generally desirable or necessary. To obtain minimum mortality, the Avitrol baits should be thoroughly mixed with untreated grain of the same composition as the Avitrol carrier. Bait placement should be made where feeding has been established i.e. high locations, on buildings and ledges, as well as on the ground. We always recommend use of trays, preferably wooden, approximately two by four feet, with one inch sides. A tray smaller than two by two feet is not recommended as pigeons prefer to be able to walk around in their food. Trays should be placed in areas highly visible and accessible to the birds. Always follow all directions on the Avitrol label(s), (including those already there for blending and placement of baits).

House Sparrow Specific


Pre-Baiting: House sparrows often favor dusting areas in the vicinity of the buildings they inhabit or in feeding areas. These dusting areas usually make good pre-baiting sites, and feed may be placed directly on the ground in these locations. House sparrows prefer ground feeding. Where such feeding may be impractical, it may be necessary to place trays (approximately two by two feet with one inch sides) on the beams and rafters observed to be frequented by the house sparrows. Trays should be placed in areas highly visible and accessible to the birds.

Baiting: As with pigeons, the applicator should use his/her own ingenuity in developing baiting techniques which best suit the local situation. It is usually best to distribute bait in the morning to take advantage of normal feeding habits. Follow all directions on the Avitrol label(s), (including those already there for blending and placement of baits). Bait should be placed where it is easily visible and accessible to the target birds throughout the entire area. House sparrows are not vigorous reactors. A high percentage of the flock (as much as 40% or more) should be affected for speedy control with Avitrol. To obtain control, mortality with house sparrows will be higher than with other species.

Starling Specific

Pre-baiting: Control of starlings at roosting sites is usually not feasible because the birds usually leave the roost before daylight and return at dusk, and starlings normally return to a roost site with satisfied appetites. Starlings are creatures of habit, and each starling flock has a specific preference for a type of food and time and place of feeding. In most cases, where grain is the primary feed, corn chops or mixed grains have been the best accepted starling bait.

Baiting: Best results are usually obtained by a massive first day treatment. This is followed by a second large treatment within the next two days.
Repeat baiting and clean-up operations on successive days until the target population ceases to return to the treated area, or until acceptable population control is attained. After the initial treatment period, when results appear promising, baiting applications may be made less frequently.

Normally the best baiting areas in feedlots are on the ground in alleys next to bunks. Note that a good first day acceptance of the treated bait is important. The most popular bait for starling control at feeding sites is Avitrol Double Strength Corn Chops. Follow all directions on the Avitrol label(s), (including those already there for blending and placement of bait). This label offers the opportunity to enhance the acceptability of the Avitrol chopped corn bait by mixing it with peanut oil or peanut butter.

Users report very satisfactory results by maintaining weekly observations and applications during the fall and winter months when the problem is most severe. A monthly routine usually suffices during the balance of the year.

Our Bird Control Survey Packet is available for download to serve as a guideline to help determine proper steps to be taken for effective control and determination of cost.

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