Homestead Hack: Keeping Birds Off Railings

by Texas Homesteader ~

RancherMan & I love the wild birds, albeit not all the bird poop they leave on the porch. We have a bird feeder out back that we keep filled so we can enjoy all those beautiful, cheery birds. 

(be sure to check out my Bird-Feeding Homestead Hack where I share how we keep ’em fed on the CHEAP!) 

There are always a wide variety of birds near our feeder and they nest nearby too, raising their young. Oh how I love it all!

But as you know, recently RancherMan & I had a porch extension built. We spend lots of time out there enjoying the birds and the scenery. 

But ugh, the birds use the railings as their perch and there was always mounds of poop building up along the railings and on the built-in benches. Until…

I got to wondering how I could enjoy the porch & that gorgeous view and still keep everything looking natural? How do I keep the birds we love from pooping all over the railings?

How do you keep birds (and their POOP) off your porch or deck railings? We came up with a simple, CHEAP solution that works like a charm! #TexasHomesteader

As you see in the photo below, all those birds leave a little something behind as they congregate on the railings.

Even with constant cleaning of the bird poop, it’s always back within minutes. How disgusting!  A constant, never ending chore.

But what’s the solution?  Hummm…

How do you keep birds (and bird POOP) off your porch or deck railings? We came up with a simple, CHEAP solution that works like a charm! #TexasHomesteader

Stopping Birds From Perching On Railing

What if I ran a string along the rails about 4″ high between the porch’s poles? Yeah! They’ll try to land and won’t be able to grip the string and they’ll give up! 

I asked RancherMan what string he’d like me to use and he said “Why don’t we just use fishing line? It’s cheap, it’s easy and it will be almost invisible!”

So we took some inexpensive fishing line and wrapped it around the first pole and strung it to the second pole along the rail – about 4″ high.  We tied it to that pole and ran another line between that pole and the next. 

Then we sat back to see if it would work. As you can see by the photo below, it really is almost invisible!

How do you keep birds (and bird POOP) off your porch or deck railings? We came up with a simple, CHEAP solution that works like a charm! #TexasHomesteader

EUREKA! It works like a charm. There are still lots of birds for us to enjoy, but they stay away from the porch now.

And because it’s almost invisible it doesn’t detract at all from the beauty of our porch. Now the bird poop doesn’t detract from our view either!


Want To Read More About Our Porch Extension?

Adding An Outdoor Living Space

Landscaping On The Cheap

No Waste (and Less Expensive) Fill Dirt For Gardens

Cheap (or FREE) Wood Mulch For Your Garden

Stopping BERMUDA GRASS From Your Plantings!

How To Keep Birds Off Your Porch Railings

Cheaper Bird Seed

MYO Hummingbird Food

See All Our Homestead Hacks


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9 thoughts on “Homestead Hack: Keeping Birds Off Railings

  1. Joann

    My deck rails are covered in bird mess so I tried this and it didn’t work. I even put two rows and they actually sat right on the fishing line! Some smaller birds sat under it. I cannot stand birds!

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      Oh I’m so sorry to hear that Joann. It made an immediate difference when I did it years ago, and the same line is installed even now. Others have written to me that they’re amazed they finally can keep their railings clean – I’ve never heard anyone say it was ineffective for them. Just grasping at straws here, maybe the difference is the length span of the rails, or how tight (or loose) the line is? Mine is tight enough to be taunt but loose enough that if a bird tried to land on the line it may sag some but maintain tension to try to spring back, making it impossible for a bird to stand on it. Maybe experiment with different heights of your line as well as different tensions? Good luck! ~TxH~

  2. Alicia

    WOW… what a great idea and so inexpensive. I have fishing line, and You gave me the straight insite for keeping birds off the railing. I can’t wait to do this in my own yard. THANK YOU!!! Looks so Good.

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      And it’s almost invisible to us too Alicia. As a matter of fact when company sits out there and they lean back & rest their arm on the rail they’re surprised to see there’s fishing line there. They don’t even notice it that close up! And the rail used to be completely covered with bird poop, but now it stays clean with no scrubbing from me. Yippee! ~TxH~

  3. Neil Smerling

    Great idea!! Did you run the fishing line along the outside of the top rail? Or down the center? It’s hard to tell from the picture. Thanks!!

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      I ran the fishing line right along the top middle of the rail, about 2″ up. The birds would try to land on the rail but couldn’t, so they’d fly off somewhere else. It’s worked like a charm! ~TxH~


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