How to Keep Turkey Vultures off Your Roof

Vulture on a shingle roof causing damage - Learn how to get vultures off your roof

No one likes seeing a vulture on their roof. Not only are they ugly, but according to the United States Department of Agriculture, vultures (also know as “buzzards”) are known to eat and damage roof shingles! They can also wear down rubber on roof boots and damage roof vents. Further, their feces (sorry, we have to go there) on the roof can emit a strong odor, and their destructiveness can cause expensive damage on shingles and rubber roofs. Fortunately, there are several simple and effective ways to get the vultures off your roof.

Some of these tips are easy and straightforward, and some require some DIY-ing.

1. Keep Your Property Clean

Keep your property as sanitary as possible. Vultures are attracted to dead animal carcasses. If you have trashcans on your property, try to avoid putting smelly or rotting food in the trash can. Make sure your trashcan has a lid or covering. Finally, if you barbeque or grill, we recommend cleaning the grill or barbeque immediately after each use. Otherwise, the small and small pieces of meat left on the grill could attract the turkey vultures.

2. Hang a vulture “scare crow”

We know this option isn’t for everyone. However, if you are up for it, consider hanging a realistic vulture or bird figurine from the roof or a nearby tree. This will act as a signal to the vultures that the area is potentially unsafe.

3. Install a “trip wire”

Stretch a piece of wire or fishing line between two poles or trees across your roof. The wire should be raised 6-8 inches above where the birds typically perch. Make sure the line is taut, and it will discourage the birds from perching in that area.

4. Scare the vultures away

For this option, you have to have nice, understanding neighbors. Use a blow horn or a noise app on your phone to make loud noises outside your home at dusk. By playing loud noises outside your home at evening when birds are preparing to roost, you can prevent them from potentially roosting on your property or roof.

5. Call wildlife control

If you are not into the DIY method, consider contacting your local pest control or wildlife control service. If you have an animal carcass in your yard, some businesses even offer dead animal removal services. Ask for their advise or see if they will come out for a free inspection. While most local pest control services do not offer vulture removal specifically, they will have the most experience dealing with local pests.

6. Have your roof inspected

Vultures can damage your shingles over time with their talons. Call a local roofing expert for a free roof inspection to see if your roof needs any repairs from the vultures perching on the roof.


Most importantly, be aware of local and national laws. Vultures are protected under the federal Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918. They may not be pretty, but they are an important part of our ecosystem. The Bird Treaty Act dictates that you may not use any lethal means of control without first trying other methods and then acquiring legal permission to terminate nuisance birds. Permits are also required to trap and relocate the birds or disturb their nests.

Worried birds or pests have damaged your roof? Call for a free roof inspection. Serving the entire NC Triangle area.

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