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captw3 08-07-2006 05:46 PM

Help! What works to keep gulls off your boat? I am in a mooring field in New England and had no problems until this week, The boat is a mess, what is the best cleaning remedy and how do I keep them off the boat? Dynimite is not an option! I have seen Owl figures, do they work? Thanks in advance, Rick

sailingfool 08-07-2006 06:09 PM

54 Attachment(s)

Do you know that your nemesis are gulls, not terns or cormorants?

Terns are a real problem in parts of MA. Folks have been running several strings of colored plastics flags fore and aft. Looks like a used car lot. See May work for gulls too. Some boaters have reported success with stretching netting across the boat, this is too new for a definitive report.

FWIW, for cormorants you need bird wires strung above the spreaders.

Good luck.

abj87 08-07-2006 06:12 PM

A string of cds strung from the shrouds will work. the flashing of the light scares them away.

svindigo 08-07-2006 06:20 PM

Like Sailingfool said
It's good to know your enemy. We did the used car lot flag arrangement and "creative" string work everywhere on board. No luck. I finally went up the mast and strung siezing wire from the spreader roots to the shrouds on all four spreaders and voila no more cormorant concrete!

Good luck

Charlie R 08-07-2006 06:45 PM

A rubber snake from Disney
You know when you're on vacation and the kids wanna always go into those gifts shops and buy the junk called souvenirs........... Well I dragged home this plastic rubbery brown snake with it's jaws open and white fangs showing. I doctored it up by putting some red paint around it's lips to look like fresh blood,put some yellow and red stripes on it's back too.. I had a problem with duck roosting on my swim platform on my powerboat this did the trick.. Now that I'm back to sailboating, I keep the snake on my fore deck to keep the smaller birds from sitting on my lifelines. You know those big eyed Owls,? Go to the sporting good store and get yourself a nice black crow. I also put red paint around it's beak and have the red dripping on it breast and feet (claws). This guy watchs over my cockpit.. They both are very effective. Let Your imagination go and see just what you come up with.

To clean I keep a scrub brush on a pole and **** & span around and although it does not get all the stain off the sun bleaches out the rest.

After five seasons with the crow, this year I spay painted him black again and he now has shiney feathers again. At my marina I'll bet I can see 2 doz Owls if I were a seagull I'd say "So what!" Or " What ever "

eryka 08-08-2006 08:41 AM

similar to abj87, we used strips of mylar torn from a potato chip bag. when we were in northern lake michigan, the birds would eat the cherries then leave deep purple splotches as 'calling cards.'

we also remade our canvas in burgundy sunbrella instead of tan, that year!:mad:

Cruisingdad 08-08-2006 06:05 PM

On the serious side:

I have found Boat Zoap (great product) cleans really well. I have also noticd bugs don't like the smell. Only negative (other than the cost) is it burns & chaps my hands a little if it is strong... but who cares!! It works great in salt and fresh. Also, a good coat or two of teflon wax makes removal a lot easier... but you obviously cannot use this on the non-skid.

I have heard some guys using the snake with limited success. I like that idea about the CD's. I might have to try that one too. I have a bunch of my wifes CD's I would love to string up there. Do Sea Gulls like Barry Manalow??

... and the not so serious side...

There are only two sure-tried methods that I know of to keep the birds off your boat:

1) A loaf of bread nicely torn into pieces and tossed on your neighbors boat. Better make sure he is not watching.

2) A pellet gun, a lawn chair, and a six pack of beer. Enough said.

BrendanR 08-10-2006 08:31 AM

Paint ball gun works even better although not recomended in a crowded marina its rather difficult to explain where the blue and green dots came from.

sailingdog 08-10-2006 09:07 AM

One company I know of sells water-filled paint gun pellets, for target practice and for the "assassination game" players. They'd be harmless to other boats, and not leave tell-tale evidence of green and blue dots behind. However, the plastic shells are still a MARPOL issue IIRC.

paulk 08-10-2006 11:01 PM

There are also certain Federal regulations concerning harassing/harming marine wildfowl that you might want to be aware of before putting anything in your sights.

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