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Bird Repellent Gels; a Factual Comparison

Many, if not most, consumers think that all bird repellent gels are essentially the same and hence price is the only difference. Nothing could be further from the truth so let's look at the facts.

1. EPA Registered Gels Vs non Registered

There are currently only three EPA registered gels on the market and they are Hot Foot, Tanglefoot and 4-the-birds. All others are a sub-registration of the latter two (Hot Foot has no sub registrations) and hence are nothing more than a private label of these two manufacturers.

For example, the EPA registered number of Tanglefoot is 1621-17 and the EPA registered number of Bird X (Bird Proof Gel) is 1621-17-8708. So you know that the Bird X product called Bird Proof is identical to Tanglefoot as it is the same product but with a different wrapper around the cartridge.

Being EPA registered means that all their label claims have been verified and accepted by the EPA so consumers know exactly what to expect and that is a good thing.

2. Sticky Unprotected Gels vs Protected Gel

All EPA registered gels are sticky and as such they will attract dust and dirt which will land on their surface, absorbing the repellent and fairly quickly will lose effectiveness; except for Hot Foot.

Only Hot Foot is sold with a spray protective coating (crystal coat) which puts a dry brittle film on top of the sticky repellent protecting it against atmospheric pollutants and dust/dirt.

Here is what you will find right on the label of the Bird X gel (Bird Proof)

"The effectiveness of this product will diminish if it becomes covered with dirt and debris. In such cases clean the surfaces and re-apply. This is not the case with the Hot Foot gel as it is sold with the protective spray coating that puts a barrier between the gel and the environment. When birds land on the gel, their little feet easily break through the coating and are repelled but the remainder of the surface remains unbroken and protected against atmospheric dust and dirt."

3. Bird Entanglement is a Possibility

All Gels are nothing more than a thick liquid and are applied in a bead like pattern on places where birds land. Without a protective coating such as the Hot Foot product "Crystal Coat" small birds can get the gel on their feathers and become entangled preventing them from flying away. Only Hot Foot is sold with this spray coating that protects against entanglement.

For examples, the label for Bird-X states

"small birds may become entrapped by this tacky repellent"

And Bird Off states on its label;

"small birds may become trapped or harmed by the repellent."

4. Resistance to Heat

Most gels have a very limited resistance to heat withstanding a maximum of 200 degrees F before melting. Melting is a major problem because once the melting point is reached then the gel turns to a liquid and will run down the building or drip onto the floor staining and ruining the surface appearance. They will also at that point lose effectiveness. Hot Foot will withstand over 350 degrees F (laboratory tested) and as such will not run or drip on metal parapet ledges or pipes or other surfaces exposed to the hot sun. In fact you can set Hot Foot on fire and it still will not run or drip it is that highly resistant to temperature.

5. Guaranteed Results

There is one, and only one bird repellent gel that carries a 2 year guarantee of performance and that is Hot Foot. Although this gel carries a written 2-Year guarantee of effectiveness, most consumers report up to 7 or more years of it continuing to work. All other gels have no such guarantee and in fact in areas where there are substantial numbers of birds they recommend repeat applications.

Here are some examples taking wording right off their label;

"The Bird X gel "Bird-Off" states
"reapply twice a year in heavy traffic "areas."
Pignx states "reapplication will be required on an as needed basis in areas of high pigeon pressure.

Not So with Hot Foot.

6. Non EPA Registered Repellents

There are now a growing number of bird repelling gels that are not EPA registered and as such are not subject to the scrutiny of the EPA and do not have the same demands to verify their label claims. This is because they use active ingredients that are not currently monitored by the EPA BUT their label claims can be disturbing. Here are some examples

"This product may be toxic to aquatic organisms. Do not apply to or allow runoff to reach lakes, streams or ponds". How do you prevent rain from running off the product when applied and then washing down freshwater drains in bays etc? Not Possible at all.

Others have oils in them like Geranium oil, white mineral oils etc and the presence of oils on buildings is something that many people just do not want in any way or fashion.


All bird repellent gels are not created equal! Thanks for visiting and we sincerely hope this article was helpful to you as look for the perfect solution to your nuisance bird issue!

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