Problems caused by excessive bird feeding, how to prevent it, and when to report it.

Feeding birds

It's important to feed birds responsibly to prevent problems with attracting larger birds, like pigeons and gulls. Their droppings can soil clothes, cars, and the pavement.

Find advice on feeding birds on the RSPB website.

Problems caused by excessive feeding

Careless or excessive bird feeding can:

  • cause noise and fouling problems for neighbours if larger birds such as crows, pigeons and gulls are attracted to the area
  • attract mice, rats and other pests
  • put off the smaller birds from feeding

How to avoid excessive feeding

To avoid careless or excessive feeding:

  • use a feeder and position it so rats, mice and larger birds cannot reach it
  • use a catch tray on your bird feeder so food does not fall onto the ground where rats and mice can get it
  • do not put too much food on bird tables
  • do not put unwanted food waste in your garden as birds are unlikely to eat it, but rats and mice will

If you're worried about excessive bird feeding

Try and talk to the person responsible for the bird feeding if you're disturbed by:

  • noise and fouling problems caused by larger birds such as crows, pigeons and gulls
  • rats, mice and other pests attracted to the area by excessive bird feeding

They may not realise they're causing a problem.

If this does not resolve the problem or you cannot talk to the person responsible, you can report it to us.

Report excessive bird feeding

You'll need to:

  • tell us how the problem has affected you over the last 7 days
  • provide photographs of the birds, or the disturbance caused

Report excessive bird feeding

We can only take formal action where feeding creates a nuisance and there's evidence that the birds being fed are the ones causing the nuisance. Feeding is classed as a nuisance when it's excessive and creates a health risk.