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Top 5 Best Woodpecker Repellents (**2020 Review**)

​Are you looking for woodpecker repellents?

Then you've come to the right place.

In this Pest Strategies product review you can expect to learn:

  • What a woodpecker repellent is and what it's supposed to do
  • Owl and coyote decoys for woodpeckers
  • Reflective tapes to repel woodpeckers
  • Sonic repellers for woodpeckers
best woodpecker repellent

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Our Overall #1 Rated Pick

(updated as of 1/8/2019)

  • ​Life-like appearance frightening almost all types of birds
  • ​Chemical-free pest control
  • ​Solar powered

Of all the woodpecker repellents we researched and reviewed, our top pick goes to Solar Action Owl.


No batteries are required since it's completely solar-powered. The head moves unpredictably whenever the solar panel collects enough energy to turn it.

The unpredictability adds to the realism, convincing woodpeckers (and other birds) that this terrifying predator is alive and watching them. They scatter in every direction when the head turns.

Want to skip all this research and just hire a decent exterminator for your ​woodpecker problem?

Click here to check out our exterminator search tool where we instantly send you free quotes from trusted (and thoroughly vetted) exterminators in your local area. 

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Top 5 Best ​Woodpecker Repellents

​Short on time or just want a quick answer?

Check out our list below for a summary of our results. Keep on reading to learn more about woodpecker repellents.

What Are Good Woodpecker Repellers?

Among the predators that can eat woodpeckers are owls, especially the larger ones such as great horned owls and barn owls. Snakes will raid their nest for eggs and young hatch-lings, while bobcats and coyotes will attack
and eat the adults if they can catch them.

The following video shows an owl attacking a woodpecker.

This means decoys or prerecorded predator sounds, or a combination of both, will be highly effective in driving woodpeckers away.​

Woodpeckers may be only birds, but they're smart enough to recognize something is wrong with an owl that never moves from one spot.

Many people misuse decoys by leaving them in one place all the time. Then they report that the decoy worked at first then the birds got used to it and now it doesn't work.

Well, yes. That's because they're not using it correctly.

Decoys have to be moved, every two days at a minimum, to prevent the birds from realizing they're not real. You should have at least 2-3 decoys and several pre-selected locations for them.

Make sure you have at least one more location than you have decoys, and if you're using owl decoys you need to make sure all the locations are as high off the ground as possible.

woodpecker bill fact

Owl Decoys To Repel Woodpeckers

Owls sit up high, swiveling their heads back and forth searching for prey. Once they spot it, they swoop down on it from above. An owl sitting on the ground or a low wall is out of place other birds know it.​

For maximum effectiveness, place a new decoy in a new location every other day. Because you more locations than decoys, it means each decoy will always be in a different location each time you put it out. This further keeps the woodpeckers from realizing what it is a decoy instead of the real thing.

Coyote Decoys To Repel Woodpeckers

Move the coyote decoy from place to place as well. When you move it, try to put it in a place where it looks like it is “hiding” from the birds – behind a tree, in tall grass, under a bush, etc.

Woodpeckers understand that predators like to wait in an ambush for their prey. A coyote decoy that is “hiding” fits in perfectly with their preconceived ideas of what a coyote will do, further adding to its realism.

Coyote decoys are more expensive than owl decoys, but if you can get at least two of them, it will be worth it.

Read Also: What're The Top 5 Best Bird Traps?

Predator Sounds To Repel Woodpeckers

Sonic repellers, which use prerecorded sounds from actual predators, are perfectly suited to be used in combination with decoys.

It adds to the overall effect, particularly when the decoys and the sonic
repellers are moved about the yard. Woodpeckers and other birds become convinced they're dealing with real predators and try to find somewhere else to go.​

Want to skip all this research and just hire a decent exterminator for your ​woodpecker problem?

Click here to check out our exterminator search tool where we instantly send you free quotes from trusted (and thoroughly vetted) exterminators in your local area. 

(Process takes about 30 seconds)

​Top 5 Best Woodpecker Repellents Reviewed

​As a quick recap, here are the woodpecker repellents we looked at.

Our #1 pick goes to the Solar Action Owl which doesn't require batteries. 

Be sure to take a look at the Natural Rotating Head Owl because it moves with the wind.

  • ​Life-like appearance scaring away various types of birds
  • ​Chemical-free pest control
  • Solar powered

This is a large, 18-inch high Great Horned Owl decoy that is incredibly life-like. It is sculpted and painted and includes staring predator eyes on a moving head.

The back of the head has a solar panel on it. The head moves every few minutes, rotating the way owls normally move their heads. Because it's solar-powered, it doesn't require any batteries.​

As an electric charge builds up from the solar panel, the move unpredictably from both a timing aspect and a range of motion one too. Sometimes it only moves a few inches, other times it turns all the way around.

The length of time varies as well, depending on the amount of energy the solar panel captures. The unpredictability of both adds to the realism of the decoy.

The hollow base has a hole that can be used to fill it with gravel to weight it down. Alternately, a pole can be slid into the hole to mount it on top of a pole. One word of warning; owls and crows are natural enemies so it
may actually attract some crows who want to fight it.


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    ​Easy to use
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    ​No batteries required
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    ​Life-sized and realistic
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    ​Head moves unpredictably


  • ​Might attract crows
  • ​Head bobs and turns in gentle breezes
  • ​An aesthetic addition to your yard while repelling birds
  • ​18" tall



This is another very realistic, sculpted and hand-painted Great Horned Owl decoy. The spring-mounted head has a wind vane on the back so that as the wind blows, the head bobs and turns.

The hollow base can be filled with gravel to weight it down, or it can be mounted on a pole.​

The wind-powered movement of the head is as unpredictable as the wind, thereby adding to the realism of this decoy.

The staring eyes are identical to real owl eyes, terrifying any woodpeckers in the area when the wind blows the head around so the eyes are “looking” at them.

As with the first decoy, crows may be attracted to it in order to fight their natural enemy.


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    ​Very easy to use
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    ​Life-sized and realistic
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    ​Doesn't require any batteries
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    ​Wind-powered head moves unpredictably


  • ​Might attract crows who want to fight
  • ​Safe, humane, and effective
  • ​Life-sized with fluffy tail for realistic appearance

Coyotes can't climb trees but their mere presence is frightening to most birds, especially woodpeckers because they know the sounds they're making from drilling or hammering on the trees has alerted the predators to their whereabouts.

Most birds and animals will freeze when a predator is in the area, hoping to go unnoticed until it moves away.​

This decoy is life-sized and hand-painted to be completely realistic. The furry tail moves in the wind, further adding to the realistic illusion. Place the decoy down in the grass or bushes as if it's “hiding” to complete the
realistic effect.

Since birds are aware that coyotes can't climb, this may not be as effective as the owl decoys.


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    ​Easy to use
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    ​Realistic appearance
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    ​Furry tail moves with the wind


  • ​Not as effective as owl decoys
  • ​Repels a wide variety of birds
  • ​Easy to install and eco-friendly

Birds don't like flashes of light in their eyes when they're flying or landing anymore than you like it in your eyes when you're driving – and for the same reason, it blinds you, preventing you from seeing where you're going.

Birds are especially vulnerable to this when they're flying since it's so easy for them to crash into something.​

This double-sided reflective tape comes on a 350-foot long roll which can be cut into any desired length. Once it is cut, hang it up from tree limbs and branches, patio beams, the gutters on your house, the chimney top, and any other elevated support.

The tape will blow in the wind, frightening the woodpeckers with its movement, then blinding them with reflected sunlight.

Long strips of it can also be coiled into a corkscrew shape and fastened to the tops of fences or long tree branches. Fasten it at long intervals so there will be enough play in it to allow for bouncing and moving in the

It is made for outdoor use but it will still probably need to be replaced every couple of months to maintain its effectiveness.


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    ​Easy to use and cost-effective
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    ​Blinds birds in flight
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    ​Highly effective in a wide variety of pest bird issues


  • ​Has to be replaced frequently
  • Foaming spray traps hornets, wasps, yellow jackets, bees, and other pests
  • Spray can reach up to 20 feet in the distance

This plug-in device uses prerecorded predator sounds to scare away woodpeckers. This is especially effective when combined with decoys.

The visual appearance of the moving decoys and the sounds that accompany them will prove to be more than most woodpeckers can stand. Because the sounds are completely real – digitally recorded from actual predators – they will be convinced they're dealing with a live predator.

The sounds will cover up to an entire acre of property with fully customizable settings, programmable timing, and high-definition playback. It is weather resistant. It comes with all the mounting hardware you'll need to mount it in a secure location.

We recommend finding several different sites to mount it on, rotating it frequently from one location to another. This will necessitate running some extension cords, however, so be aware of that.


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    ​Easy to use
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    ​Plugs into any outlet
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    ​Actual predator noises
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    ​Mountable on any surface
  • High definition digital sounds and playback


  • ​Requires extension cords to work

Our Top Pick: Solar Action Owl

​There are a lot of woodpecker repellents on the market.

​The most effective one will always float to the top of any review.

Overall, our pick goes to Solar Action Owl.

It is completely solar-powered so it never needs batteries. The head moves unpredictably whenever the solar
panel collects enough energy to turn it.

​The unpredictability adds to the realism which convinces the woodpeckers they're facing a live owl.

A close second is the Natural Rotating Head Owl because it is a wind-powered version of the first one, with many of the same advantages.

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