How to Keep Woodpeckers From Pecking Your Deck


Woodpeckers are known for pecking through wood in search of wood-boring insects. Unfortunately, many woodpeckers do not stop at trees. They may also begin pecking on your wooden deck, causing minor to severe damage. Because of the North American Migratory Bird Act, homeowners are forbidden to kill the woodpeckers, but they can take action to keep the woodpeckers away from their wooden decks.

Things You'll Need

  • Plastic owls
  • Plastic hawks
  • Garden hose
  • Sprinkler
  • Reflective devices
  • Sticky bird repellents
  • Mount plastic owls or hawks around the ledges of your wooden deck. Both owls and hawks scare woodpeckers, thus keeping them from coming near your deck.

  • Stand watch and squirt the offending woodpeckers every time they land on your deck to peck the wood. After they get wet a few times, the woodpeckers will leave your property in search of a new place to call home. If you won't be home to squirt the woodpeckers yourself, set up a sprinkler that will squirt water in the area the woodpecker has been seen pecking.

  • Tie several reflective devices around your deck railing to repel the woodpeckers. Aluminum pie tins, aluminum foil sheets, pinwheels and reflective Mylar tape will all work for this purpose. Woodpeckers don't like shiny objects.

  • Cover the areas of the deck that the woodpeckers have been pecking with sticky bird repellents. Woodpeckers will land on the spot and get annoyed by the sticky feeling. This will cause them to fly away. The woodpeckers may return a few times before they get the hint and leave for good.

Tips & Warnings

  • The University of Missouri states that a helium balloon with eye owls painted on it is also effective. Substitute this method for plastic owls, if you do not wish to purchase them.
  • Fill all of the holes in your deck made by the woodpeckers as soon as possible. Carpenter bees are known for making their homes in these empty holes.


  • Photo Credit John Foxx/Stockbyte/Getty Images
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