Church wages war against pigeons by electrifying porch and zapping pests

A church is waging war on pigeons by ­electrifying its porch and zapping the pests.

Parishioners regularly slip on droppings and are pooed on from above as they enter and leave the building.

But disgruntled churchgoers have now taken drastic action to stop the feathered fiends, which have been deemed a “safety risk”.

A Church of England court has given permission to fit an “electronic bird deterrent” at the Grade I-listed St Mary the Virgin in Bristol.

The device will deter the pigeons from gathering by giving them a mild shock.

It will have wires laid into a rubberised strip which will zap any birds which land on it.

Church leaders came upon the idea after multiple forms of pest control failed, including spikes, gel and shooting.

They said the unit would “discourage pigeons from nesting in the north porch of the church” and stop them from “fouling the stonework”, which dates back to the 12th Century.

Justin Gau, Chancellor of the Diocese of Bristol, warned it would give the birds a “small but disconcerting electric shock”.

He said the problem “is not uncommon”, adding: “Pigeons have discovered this lovely church is an ideal place to escape inclement weather and to provide a safe space to nest.”

Although the gadget would cause “mild discomfort”, Mr Gau added it would stop the church
being further damaged.

He added: “In my judgment the suffering is
proportionate to preserve the building and to avoid distress to staff, visitors to the church and members of the congregation.”

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