Bird Damage Management

POSTED IN Uncategorized ON 6/29/2019

Here are a couple of recommendations from saskatoon growers to help reduce bird damage to otherwise harvestable saskatoon crops:

  1. Netting: After  few years of significant bird loss, Jacques Orchards did a trial plot of bird netting last year. They were so pleased that they covered the orchard this year (adding the lesson learned about making sure that the netting touched the ground all the way around). This year things are looking very good. The photo below shows what they netting looks like.  It can be removed for partial harvest, and then the bushes can be covered again until later in the season.
Net Over Saskatoon Bushes

2. Helpful Birds: Encouraging Kingbirds can be a great option.  Kingbirds eat insects, but not much fruit, and they are scrappy, so often scare off other birds, including flocking birds, that want your saskatoons as their entree, over and over again.

There are 2 identified types of Kingbirds: western and eastern.

Learn more about Kingbirds at: https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Western_Kingbird/overview

Kestrel Hawks are another option: https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/American_Kestrel

By providing an appropriate habitat, you may be able to entice these preferred neighbors.

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