Woodpecker holes on your South Shore and Boston-area home

How to stop the Boston-area woodpeckers from pecking on your home:woodpecker standing on house

Almost 20% of the homes we work on in the Boston area have woodpecker holes. Of course, our carpenters can fill with wood putty so water doesn’t get inside your wood siding and trim and cause the wood to rot, but here I’m going to explain how to prevent woodpeckers from drilling holes into your home and how to fix the holes if you already have them.

Woodpeckers peck for a few reasons:

Food (mostly insects): if you suspect the woodpecker is preying on insects such as bees or termites, you may need to call an exterminator.  If your home has shingles or shakes, insects often lay their eggs in the spaces between each piece of wood, thereby attracting the woodpecker.

Important to know:  This “pecking for insects” is rarely what we’ve seen on South Shore and Boston-area homes.

Shelter: If you notice larger holes, the woodpecker may be building a nest in your home.

Attracting a mate: The woodpeckers love to hear the drumming sound of their beaks and use the sound to attract a mate. Fall and Spring are the most common times you might hear them pecking. They also might drum against metal gutters because they find that sound pleasing.

Whatever the reason though you must stop the woodpecker from drumming on your home.

Here are a few woodpecker deterrents:

Use chicken wire to cover the area they are pecking and “mold the wire” in a drum shape so that the woodpecker’s beak can no longer reach the house.

Woodpeckers hate metallic/flashy items so hang an old CD (Compact Disc) or metallic tape up near the holes.  What’s important is the CD swing in the wind.   If you don’t know what a CD is, ask someone over 30!

Woodpeckers are scared of owls – hanging an owl statue often works to deter woodpeckers and all sorts of birds.  You can easily get these on Amazon or at Curry Ace Hardware in Hanover.

Our owner Lou NeJame crafted a bird out of aluminum foil and then hung it from his soffit by string so it could swing in the breeze.

Trim back large trees from your home (try methods 1-3 first, this is the last resort).

Fixing woodpecker holes on your South Shore and Boston Area Home

Our carpenters can fix woodpecker holes as long as they are not too large or replace the wood boards on your home that have been pecked.

To fix the holes yourself, fill them with wood putty, sand then prime and paint the hole so it’s not noticeable.

Important: Keep your deterrent method on your home even after your woodpecker holes are fixed and it seems like the woodpecker is gone.  Also, the woodpecker may leave and start pecking on the other side of your home, so you may have to put up something on the other side of your home as well!

If you have any questions, feel free to email [email protected]. We’re happy to answer your questions even if you’re doing the project yourself.

You also might like:

Our carpentry services to fix your woodpecker holes or rotted wood.

“Does my exterior need painting?”  Take our 20-second quiz to find out.

Our exterior painting process.

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