Tips for Getting Rid of Bird Poop from a Boat
Birds love boats, especially fishing boats, where they seek out scraps left by fisherman. However, bird droppings can be a real nuisance to a boat, which can do some serious damage when left unattended.
Birds are attracted to boats, making them a prime target for droppings. And birds hanging out on your boat and flying above it will drop bombs … lots of them! When a bird dropping is still fresh, it can easily be wiped off with some soap and water. However, poop that’s had enough time to dry and get cemented in can be a nightmare to get rid of.
Bird poop has harmful chemicals in it like uric acid, which is corrosive, and can eat through paint and wax if it sets in long enough. It can also damage wiring and equipment on your boat, and has bacteria in it that can create mold and make humans sick. With that in mind, here are some quick tips for getting rid of bird poop from your boat.
Preventing Birds from Pooping On Your Boat
Making your boat unattractive to birds is one of the best ways to prevent your boat from becoming a target for their droppings. When birds see boats, they see opportunities for a meal, so you’ll want to find ways to scare them off. After all, what better way is there to prevent avian waste on your boat than to keep birds away altogether?
Use Bird Deterrents
One way to scare birds off is to place a fake animal on your boat that looks like a predator. This could be a realistic-looking crouching cat on the deck, or a fake owl on the roof of your boat. Anything that gives the illusion of a predator hanging out on your boat can act as a “scarecrow”, so to speak.
Having a real dog on your boat can also drive birds away. Dogs have a tendency to chase just about anything, including birds, and even the mere presence of a pooch as a potential predator can deter birds from perching on your boat.
Using mirrors and reflective tape on the deck of your boat is another way to deter birds from landing on it, as bright reflective light is a known bird repellent. Strategically place mirrors and reflective tape around your boat to bounce sunlight off them near spots where birds may want to perch.
Remove Food from Your Boat
Pretty straightforward here, but remove anything that acts as a food source for birds. Don’t leave food out on your deck, including pet food and fishing scraps. Keep your trash cans covered with lids, and use bug repellents on your boat’s deck, as bugs are also a source of food for birds.
Wax Your Boat
Waxing your boat regularly won’t prevent birds from perching on your boat, but it can create surfaces slippery enough to make them want to go somewhere else. Boat wax also provides a protective layer against corrosion created by bird droppings.
Use Boat and Engine Covers
When your boat isn’t in use, cover it. Same for the outboard(s). That’s what covers are for, to provide protection against the elements, plus anything else that can damage your boat and its engines. Let the covers take the punishment of getting bombarded by bird poop when the boat isn’t being used.
Getting Bird Poop Off Your Boat
Countless cleaning products exist that are powerful enough to get rid of set-in bird droppings from your boat. But there’s one highly recommended specialized product that says so in its name and product description: Starbrite Bird and Spider Stain Remover. Its description is as follows:
“Non-toxic, all-natural formula that quickly dissolves messy spider and bird droppings. Contains no bleach, safe for use around kids and pets. Will not remove polish or wax. Works instantly when applied and doesn’t require hard scrubbing. Safe for use on most marine surfaces.”
Follow the directions on the bottle for whatever cleaning products you choose, but when using a cleaner to get rid of bird poop, you typically spray it on, give it some time to penetrate the stains, and then rinse it off. Because you’re dealing with toxic bird waste, make sure to wear gloves too.
Other marine cleaning products known to be effective at repelling and/or removing bird droppings include non-skid deck cleaner and marine polish to repel stains; rust-stopper to protect against corrosion on metal; and cleaner-wax to break down heavy stains.