Introduction: Bird Deterrent for Boathouse

We have a two-slip boathouse in East Texas. It is a convenient respite from the sun, wind and rain for the birds. Unfortunately with it comes bird poop all over the dock, deck, and boats. When we are away we have the boats covered but they are usually peppered with poop on our return. I have tried a few things including a plastic owl with limited success. After reading many sites and product reviews, I decided to try to hang some iridescent tape to keep the birds off. I will update this instructable once I have some results to report.

Step 1: Materials

I based this design on iridescent tape which has been reported to create visible and audible distractions for birds.

After reading many discussion boards worth of feedback, I chose to create a horizontal length of fishing line to hold several strips of tape dangling beneath.

Unsure of the beauty of this design when we are hanging out on the dock, I attached the line to small carabiners and put small screw eyes into the boat house pillars for attachment points - so they could be temporarily removed or repaired.

Finally, one of the Amazon product reviews I read for the tape said that his tape ripped off of the fishing line as it fluttered in the wind and suggested reinforcing the attachment points with duct tape.


1 roll iridescent tape
Duct tape
Fishing line
Screw eyes, 2x per line
Carabiner, 2x per line

Tools: scissors or knife to cut tape and line, hammer or drill to start screw eyes

Step 2: Construction

Decide where you will hang your lines. I made 2, across the openings of each of the boat slips. The birds nest up under the eves and enter from the front. So I picked a spot 6" below the roof joint across two piers.

1. Measure and attach screw eyes.

2. Tie one end of fishing line to carabiner. I used a Trilene knot and secured it with a small strip of duct tape.

3. Measure line length across to other screw eye and attached second carabiner. Allow a little slack for attaching tape strips.

4. Make tape strips. Cut lengths of iridescent tape (I used 18"). To one end, put a fold of duct tape over the end to reinforce. Pierce duct tape/bird tape with knife/scissors/etc to create a hole for line.

5. Attach tape strips. Grab a loop of line where you want the tape strip and push it thru the hole. Grab loop on other side and pull tape strip all the way thru so fishing line rests on duct tape at top of the strip.

6. Repeat for remaining strips. I spaces them out 18-24".

7. Attach the second carabiner and you are done.