Pigeons are not ‘rats with wings’. They are actually extremely interesting birds with real personalities. One little boy made friends with a pigeon he would regularly see near a railway station. When one day the small boy was being bullied, the pigeon flew down to attack the bullies!
PiCAS are England’s experts on humane prevention/removal of urban birds (mostly pigeons but also gulls and doves). They use ‘bird spikes’ sometimes, but this is not the only answer, as they have issues of their own. But they recommend other methods and work with councils, offices and hospitals who have issues, but don’t wish to use lethal control (which usually does not work and is also more expensive).
The company is critical of those who use birds of prey, saying this does not result in quick kills, and many children have been traumatised if they accidentally saw a pigeon ripped apart. Using hawks as deterrents was also frowned upon, as part of the effort to remove pigeons from London’s Trafalgar Square. Measures like public education and controlled feeding may be good, but lethal control is not.