For many, the movie-making process is this magical thing that happens behind the curtain. We don’t know all its secrets and tweaks, as we are only presented with the finished product. People, who are not part of the film industry, usually don’t know any details of movie sets, production or what happens in the editing studios afterward. However, movie sets, just like any other commercial spaces, often have to deal with pests and nuisance wildlife, as birds are a common problem. Depending on where the filming takes place, movie makers can struggle with nuisance birds, raccoons, or skunks trying to steal leftover food from the film crew or other wild animals that suddenly decided to try their luck in the film industry.
As we mentioned before, filming can take place in various spaces so there is no one solution to keeping wildlife off of movie sets. The steps that filmmakers take depend on the localization and the likelihood of nuisance wildlife or pest presence.
Some small measures can be taken to prevent the wild animals or pests coming near the movie set. Firstly, the staff tends to be trained on the best basic practices such as cleaning up right after something gets spilled or if food ends up accidentally on the floor. Most animals wander in search of easy food sources, and leftover crew food or sweet drinks spilled on the ground can be a huge temptation for wildlife. Hence why it is important to make sure everything is cleaned afterward.
Having control over nuisance birds in open spaces is not the easiest task. Pigeons, starlings, gulls, or even house sparrows can be a huge nuisance to filmmakers who are shooting an important scene outside. Again, bird pests are usually attracted to sites by the availability of food. Filmmakers can manage the set in a way that the food is not building up and doesn’t attract large flocks of birds. People who are responsible for environmental management on movie sets should make sure that there are enough bins provided on the set, feeding of the birds is banned, and that regular cleaning is ensured.
If the movie set contains buildings, movie makers may decide on installing special nets, spikes, and wires to prevent the birds from roosting on top of the buildings.
Temporary fencing can be used in some of the locations to prevent wildlife from entering the set and securing the filming area. This type of fencing is also called ‘mobile fencing’ and is often made out of metal, as this material provides durability but is also easy to move if necessary. Temporary fencing is used not only in film sets but also in many outdoor events or even at construction sites.
Commercial Wildlife Management
If the nuisance wildlife becomes a bigger problem and regularly interrupts the filmmaking process, movie creators and managers of the set are likely to contact local wildlife management companies. These professionals can help in dealing with any animals in a humane and safe way.