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How to Get Rid of Barn Swallows

how to get rid of barn swallows

Are barn swallows and their nests just on your house? Then, you know – these landing and nesting birds create a lot of noise on your property, especially at night when you sleep.

Even when barn swallows are outside of your property, their droppings, feathers, and nest paraphernalia can get sucked into drainpipes or vents and create a fire hazard that can lead to thousands of dollars in repairs. When vents become garbage cans for swallows, any odor or disease that comes along with these birds can contaminate the air you breathe and the food you eat.

In this article, you will find out how to make the process of swallow nest removal much easier.


4 Effective Steps Guide on How to Get Rid of Barn Swallows

Barn swallows are a common problem for homeowners. Swallows can be an annoying pest, but they are also considered to be beneficial because of their insect-eating habits. The issue is that they build nests in your home, and you don't want them there!

Here are 4 steps on how to get rid of barn swallows without harming the birds or yourself.

Step 1. Swallow bird nest removal

Step 1: Step 1. Swallow bird nest removal

  • Remove old barn swallows nests – but only when they are vacant – and thoroughly clean all feathers and droppings with a cleaning solution.
  • Add a coat of fresh paint over areas to be treated.
  • Remove all old nests from unwanted surfaces, so they cannot be reused.
Remember, barn swallows are protected under Federal Law. Once eggs are laid inside nests, you cannot remove them until the chicks have hatched.

Step 2. Install netting

Step 2: Step 2. Install nettingIf you want to block off access to tricky building sides, rafters, and other desirable areas or crevices – barn swallows wish to build nests – bird netting is the best solution. Install bird – swallow – netting wherever you want to keep barn swallows out of an area or other valuable property.

I suggest buying the following products:

  • How it works: Effectively repels swallows out of desired areas.
  • Benefits: It's a humane and eco-friendly way to repel barn swallows, nearly invisible, pliable lightweight, maintenance-free material and 100% efficient everywhere this product is installed – great for zero-tolerance zone.
  • Ideal for use at: rooftops, homes, garages, underpasses, and bridges.

  • It's physically blocks barn swallows from entering, nesting, feeding, roosting and causing damage. The product is ideal for homeowners, farmers, gardeners and small businesses.
  • How it works: Effectively repels swallows out of desired areas.
  • Ideal for use at: trees, gardens and outdoor areas.

Step 3. Deter swallows with ultrasonic repellents

Step 3: Step 3. Deter swallows with ultrasonic repellentsIf netting is not an option, consider using Bird-X Quadblaster QB4.

  • How it works: Quadblaster emits sound to intimidate, confuse and disorient swallows to quickly scare them away from the treated areas.
  • Covers: up to 6,500 ft²
  • Ideal for use at: trees, gardens and outdoor areas.


  • Easy to install, low-profile solution.
  • Can be used indoors or in semi-enclosed spaces.
  • Emit high-frequency sounds.
  • Solid steel construction.
  • Cut recurring cleanup and repair costs.
  • Decrease nuisance for residents, customers and workers.

Step 4. Add visual deterrents

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIf you want to maximize the results – when combined with the effective deterrents – add visual deterrents. We suggest using Plastic Owl.

  • Effectively scares away barn swallows and other birds.
  • How it works: effectively repels swallows out of desired areas.
  • Covers up to 1,200 ft².


  • Prevent the spread of diseases.
  • Protect equipment and buildings from corrosive bird droppings.
  • Save outdoor grounds from bird damage.
  • Increase property esthetic.
  • Avoid safety inspection failures.
Prevent barn swallows from returning to build nests again in the same area.
Install an owl, hawk decoy, or slant board to block swallows’ nesting site.

Basic Information


Swallow identification

  • Body. These noisy birds have a long, slender and streamlined body with lengthy and pointed wings.
  • Head. The head of a bird is small but the beak – that is short – is strong.
  • Tail. The tails of swallows can be square-ended or forked.
  • Legs. The legs of the barn swallow are short.
  • Color. Most species of barn swallows are white below and glossy green or blue above.


Swallows geographyBarn swallows are small, very adaptable birds that are native in all the bio geographic regions except Australia and Antarctica.

The breeding range of these brightly colored birds includes northern Europe, North America, north-central Asia, the Middle East, northern Africa, southern China, and Japan.


Swallow nestAnywhere, where there are open and affordable areas for water source foraging and a sheltered ledge for their nest.

When it comes to swallows’ nesting habits you are to know these birds prefer building their nests under the eaves of houses, bridges, boat docks, and in rock caves.

Do Swallows Cause Problems?

Swallow nest problemsNesting swallows can become a nuisance for most homeowners. Not only they can build mud nests around building exteriors, including eaves and porches but also defecate and foul feed in and around their mud nests, damaging exteriors of homes or other buildings.

What’re more large colonies in urban areas can create health risks for people living there.

Finally, the disease – like salmonella – can be transmitted through the droppings of barn swallows.

Barn swallows, mud, and cliffs do carry diseases, including encephalitis, histoplasmosis, salmonella, toxoplasmosis, and Cryptococcus.
These swallow illnesses are usually spread by contact with swallow nest materials, poop, and dead swallows.

To stop swallows from building mud nests you are to use exclusion and other deterrent products and techniques. Here is how to do it.

Two Efficient Deterrents to Drive Them Away

1. Bird-B-Gone Swallow Shield Deterrent

This used to keep troublesome birds from building their mud nests under eaves or on the sides of buildings. Each strip of this deterrent has a self-adhering back that is effectively used for fast application on gables entryways, eaves, and other areas.

How it works: The hanging “twine” blocks barn swallows access to nesting sites. Swallows will not want to wade through these strips, and will surely move on to a better spot to nest.

The product is ideal for: gables, eaves, overhangs.

Benefits: Humane way of swallow control, easy installation due to adhesive strip, low-profile – virtually invisible.

Swallows can build their nest in as little as 24 hours.


For temporary installation of deterrent:

  • Leave the adhesive backing in place.
  • Position deterrent about one or two inches from the wall in the prepared area and attach using 2 – not included – fasteners through the mounting holes provided.

For permanent installation:

  • Remove the adhesive red backing.
  • Position deterrent about one or two inches from the wall in the prepared area and firmly press Swallow Shield onto the eave or gable.

2. Bird Slope 4′ Sections

Bird Slope SectionA physical bird deterrent used to block birds – like barn swallows – from landing or nesting on open ledges.

Where to buy: available at Bird-B-Gone

How it works: The unique design of Bird Slope makes it impossible for swallows to land or nest in 90° areas such as eaves or ledges.

Benefits: Humane way of swallow control, easy installation.

Effectiveness: The product is effective for small and large birds.

Have questions on installing the product? Call Bird-B-Gone Company at 1-888-570-0360.

How to Repel Barn Swallows with Best-Selling Bird Control Systems

1. BirdXPeller Pro Electronic Bird Repeller

This best-selling sonic barn swallows and bird control system uses real sounds and a variety of naturally recorded bird distress predator cries that frightens, confuse, and disorient pest birds like barn swallows within the effective range.

Ideal for use at: sheds and storage buildings.

How it works: emits audible sounds that deter barn swallows.

The product is ideal for: gables, eaves, overhangs.

Benefits: it is a humane and eco-friendly way to repel barn swallows from outdoor areas, save parks, yards, equipment, etc. from corrosive swallows droppings, avoid safety and government inspection failures, prevent the spread of diseases, decrease nuisance for residents and increase property esthetic.

2. Bird Blazer by Bird-X

This remote-controlled laser device can safely frighten barn swallows away. Bird Blazer system uses fat-beam laser bird control technology at random intervals in color combinations barn swallows don’t like, forcing them to find calmer landing locations.

Ideal for use at: stables, barns and storage sheds.

How it works: The product safely frightens barn swallows away, works day and night.

The product is ideal for: gables, eaves, overhangs.

Benefits: Protect property and equipment from corrosive swallows droppings, prevent the spread of diseases, decrease nuisance for residents and increase/maintain property aesthetics.

3. Bird-B-Gone AAFS Control Module – Air Treatment System

Bird-B-Gone AAFS Control moduleYou can use Bird-B-Gone AAFS Control Module. This product is the first fogging unit that offers a computerized touch screen and programmable components. The product distributes methyl anthranilate that is really effective in repelling pest birds.

Where to use: The Bird-B-Gone AAFS can be used in garages, patios, parks, landfills, warehouses, factories, courtyards, airline hangars, golf courses, rooftops, docks/marinas.


  • Each drop station can cover a location of about 6,000 – 8,000 ft².
  • Spray units of the product can be set to go off at alternating times or simultaneously.
  • The control panel will notify you when to refill the units.
  • Ideal for outdoor use!

  • Easy to use and install!
  • Uses less liquid repellent than other fogging units!
  • Effective for all birds!
  • Programmable system to fit your requirements!

When it comes to swallows’ removal, you should act humanely. Consider our tips and don’t let these wonderful birds take control of your house.

FAQs about Barn Swallows

What Will Keep Barn Swallows Away?

There's no magic solution if you're looking for a surefire way to get rid of barn swallows. But you can do a few things to make your property less attractive to these pests. Here are a few ideas:

  • Block off any openings where barn swallows might be able to nest. It might mean filling in cracks in your eaves or putting screens over vents and other spaces.
  • Keep your yard free of potential nesting materials like straw, hay, and twigs.
  • Reduce the number of insects around your property - barn swallows eat a lot of insects, so if you can reduce the insect population, they'll have less reason to stick around. You can eliminate standing water, keep trash cans tightly sealed, and use insecticides if necessary.
Can You Destroy Barn Swallow Nest?

It is illegal to intentionally kill, injure, or destroy a barn swallow nest under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918. Any person who violates this law can be fined up to $500 and/or imprisoned for up to six months.

Barn swallows are considered a migratory bird species and are protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. This law prohibits the take (i.e., killing, injuring, or capturing) of any migratory bird, their eggs, or their nests without a permit from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. So it is illegal to destroy a barn swallow nest, and anyone who does so can be fined and/or imprisoned.

The best way to get rid of barn swallows is to make your property less attractive so they'll nest elsewhere.

If you have a barn swallow problem, contact a pest control professional who can help eliminate these pests. In the meantime, take steps to make your property less inviting, and hopefully, they'll find somewhere else to roost.

Are Barn Swallows Good to Have Around?

Absolutely! Barn Swallows are one of the best natural defenses against pesky insects. Barn Swallows eat a lot of insects. They can eat 60 insects per hour or 850 per day! That's a lot of bugs that won't be bothering you or your family and pets! So, if you're looking for an easy and affordable way to reduce the number of bugs in your yard, invite some Barn Swallows for dinner. They'll be happy to help.

Also, they're a joy to watch as they dart around catching bugs in mid-air. And research has shown that their presence can even help reduce the incidence of certain diseases like Malaria. So if you're looking for a helpful and beautiful animal to have around your property, you can't go wrong with a barn swallow!

What Home Remedy Keeps Birds Away?

There are several home remedies that people claim will keep birds away. Some of these include:

  • Hanging CDs or DVDs in the yard - the reflection is supposed to scare birds away.
  • Stringing up Mylar balloons - the shiny surface is supposed to reflect light and scare birds away.
  • Putting up owl decoys or statues - owls are natural predators of birds, so their presence is supposed to scare birds away.
  • Hanging strips of ribbon or streamers in the yard - the movement is supposed to scare birds away.

Do any of these home remedies actually work? It's hard to say for sure. Some people swear by them, while others find they don't make a difference. If you want to try one of these home remedies, it's worth a shot - you may find it works for you!

How Do I Stop Swallows from Nesting in My Shed?

If you're finding barn swallows nesting in your shed, there are a few things you can do to stop them.

  • First, try to seal off any openings where they might be getting in. It could include cracks in the eaves or spaces around vents. You may also want to put up screens over these openings.
  • Another way to deter barn swallows from nesting in your shed is to keep the area around it free of potential nesting materials like straw, hay, and twigs. They'll be less likely to nest there if they have nothing to build their nests with.
  • Finally, you can reduce the number of insects around your property. Barn swallows eat a lot of insects, so if there are fewer insects for them to eat, they may be less likely to stick around. You can do this by eliminating sources of standing water and using insecticides sparingly.

If you follow these tips, you should be able to get rid of barn swallows nesting in your shed. Remember to be patient; it may take a little while for them to find somewhere else to nest.