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Protecting cherries from birds is not easy. However, this must be done, otherwise the feathered robbers in pursuit of free prey can completely destroy the entire crop or most of it. Indeed, it is often the birds that inflict much more damage on the berries than diseases and pests.
Do starlings eat cherries
The answer to this question is unequivocal - yes. Moreover, it is the starlings that are the main reason that the number of areas occupied by cherry orchards has recently significantly decreased in Europe and around the world.
Flocks of voracious birds simply forced farmers to abandon the cultivation of this berry, making its production unprofitable.
Is there any reason to worry
Sweet cherry attracts not only starlings. Ripe berries are a welcome prey for sparrows, jays, blackbirds. Do not hesitate to feast on delicious cherries and crows. Moreover, the birds, looking for ripe fruits, peck and spoil the mass of berries, thus destroying the crop even before its final ripeness.
What harm do birds do to seedlings and young shoots
The biggest harm that tiles can do to young shoots is to break them. Especially if a large flock sits on a young tree. Birds can also damage the bark of trees by pecking insects from its folds.
How to save cherries from birds
There are quite a few ways to protect cherries from birds. They all boil down to two principles:
- Restricting access to birds.
- The use of deterrent devices.
The first method includes various nets and shelters. The second - various mechanisms and devices that cause fear in birds and forcing them to stay away.
What are starlings, sparrows and other birds afraid of?
Birds have quite a few natural enemies, so you can scare them in different ways. This could be:
- loud noise;
- Flash Light;
- stuffed natural enemies;
Birds are also scared away by strong unpleasant odors. Over time, however, birds tend to get used to the same threat, as long as it doesn't harm them. At the same time, the feeling of fear is dulled or disappears altogether, so you cannot rely on only one type of protection.
What are the ways to protect cherries from birds
The most common way to protect the trees is to cover the trees with a special fine mesh that insulates the tree. This method is good in that it does not create unnecessary problems for the tree, the mesh does not interfere with access to the leaves of sunlight and air. However, it is rather difficult to apply it for mature tall trees.
To scare away birds, various mobile and stationary scarecrows and stuffed animals are most often used. In addition, various mechanical devices are used that emit loud noises, produce flashes or emit ultrasound.
How to protect young cherries from birds
Small trees are easier and safer to cover with netting or other material. Polyethylene is often used for this, but it is airtight and must be used with care so that the tree does not suffocate. The use of nonwoven covering materials has also proven itself well.
How to hide cherries from birds
Young cherries can be covered with a fine mesh, making a kind of bag out of it. In this case, the mesh should be such that the bird's head does not crawl into it, otherwise curious birds will simply get stuck in it and die.
The net must be thrown over the tree from above and fixed from below so that it is not blown away by the wind. It is not necessary to tighten the mesh tightly so as not to break the branches.
How to save the cherry crop from birds
To protect the crop, you can use any available tools, both made independently and purchased in a store. A wide variety of items can be used, from empty cans hung on branches to modern ultrasonic repellents. You can use everything that moves and rustles, makes sounds and flashes of light. In the end, all is fair in war. And the more varied the methods of protection are, the more chances you have to save the crop.
How to scare birds away from cherries
Birds are by nature quite fearful, and would rather retire than endanger their lives. And you can scare them in different ways.
How to save cherry fruits from birds using rustling elements
Anything that makes a rustling sound is suitable for this method of protection. Most often, they use old tape from tape and video cassettes. Hanging on branches and swaying from the wind, the ribbon makes a constant rustling noise, which is very effective in scaring away birds.
The disadvantage of this method is that it is useless in the absence of wind, and the film becomes entangled in the branches over time and ceases to fulfill its function. Therefore, it is advisable to use this method in combination with others.
How to keep birds away from your cherry crop with reflective, shiny and colored repellents
The bright glare of the sun is great for scaring away birds. Old CDs are most often used as reflective elements, hanging them on strings all over the tree. Just strips of foil from chocolates, shiny tin cans, bright colored ribbons will do. At the slightest breath of wind, all this will sparkle wonderfully, scaring away all the birds in the area.
A scarecrow will help keep cherries from birds
An old proven way to scare birds away is to install a scarecrow on the site. Usually it is made from scrap materials so that it resembles a human silhouette.
Everything is suitable for manufacturing: sticks, old clothes and hats, any attributes of everyday life. The fantasy here is truly endless. If only the figure was like a person.
Dummies of natural enemies of birds, for example, owls or cats, can also be used as a scarecrow. They are placed directly on the tree in a zone of good visibility. The disadvantage of scarecrows is that the birds gradually get used to them. Especially if the scarecrow is in one place for a long time and in the same position.
How to ward off starlings from cherries with rattles, rattles, pinwheels, wind chimes
Homemade ratchets and turntables are easiest to make from a regular plastic bottle. Such devices perfectly combine visual and sound effects, producing uneven noise and spinning under the influence of the wind. Empty plastic bottles can also be hung up like Christmas tree decorations. Even a slight vibration of them under the influence of the wind will create a noise from friction against leaves or branches, which is always perceived by birds as a danger.
In addition to spinners, mills and rattles, you can hang wind chimes on cherry branches. Their melodic ringing for birds is definitely a signal of the presence of a person.
How to protect the cherry crop from starlings using gadgets
Modern technologies make it possible to create almost exact copies of living beings and at the same time make them move, make various sounds, etc. To protect the garden from uninvited guests, it is enough to purchase such a product in the store and fix it on a branch. And hardly any starling or thrush will dare to sit on one tree with an exact copy of a kite, which not only moves its wings and twists its head, but also makes sounds of aggression.
With their undoubted efficiency, such gadgets have one significant drawback - the price.
Birds don't like loud and harsh sounds
Many people use loud sound or music as a deterrent. To do this, most often turn on the radio under the tree. It really helps. However, birds quickly get used to the constant sound, so it is better if the sound alternates with pauses and changes in strength and frequency. For this, special audio recordings are used, which periodically reproduce a variety of sounds, for example, shots or animal screams of danger.
Ultrasonic and infrared scarers will help keep birds away from cherries
Modern electronics allows you to reproduce ultrasound, it is this range that many animals use when transmitting a danger signal. Ultrasonic scarers are widely used in industrial agricultural enterprises such as elevators and feed mills.
This very effective technology can also protect the garden. As a rule, such devices are equipped with infrared sensors that react to the approach of a bird. After the sensor is triggered, the ultrasonic emitter turns on for a short time and scares away the uninvited guest.
A gas cannon will protect cherries from birds
The principle of operation of this device is as follows. A cannon with a connected gas cylinder periodically simulates a rifle shot, while a bright flash with a characteristic pop comes out of the barrel.
The device is programmed for the frequency of detonation (for example, 1 shot every 15 minutes). At the same time, a standard propane tank with a capacity of 5 liters is enough for about 4000 shots.
Important! The noise level during detonation of the gas mixture can reach 130 dB, so gas cannons are used to protect large gardens. One cannon is capable of scaring away birds from an area of 5–7 hectares.
Non-standard methods of crop protection
Quite exotic things can be used as a bird repeller. For example, balloons filled with helium or kites constantly floating in the air. A homemade stuffed animal resembling an owl is tied to the branches, or an old fur hat is placed, imitating a cat sitting on a branch.
To save the cherry harvest will help ... ordinary threads
Some gardeners use this method as well. An ordinary white thread from a spool is tied to the lower branches, and then the spool is thrown over the crown. Gradually, the whole tree is entangled in a kind of white net.
Distracting methods of protecting cherries from starlings
Distracting methods are considered the most humane. Its principle is to feed the birds with something else, so that they are well-fed and do not touch the desired culture. However, this method, as a rule, does not work on cherries. Cherry is not in vain called "bird cherry", and birds are unlikely to give up the gratuitous delicacy for the sake of something else. On the contrary, the cherry itself will serve as a distracting culture.
Installing feeders on the site will not solve the problem either, but will only attract an additional number of birds.
How to keep cherry fruits from birds with unpleasant scents
You can ward off annoying birds from cherries by spraying trees with infusions of sharp and harsh plants, for example, garlic or pepper. This method will make the berries tasteless for starlings, but only until the first rain. Then the processing must be repeated again.
How to get rid of starlings on cherries for a long time
Sometimes, driven to despair by the struggle with annoying flying robbers, gardeners decide to take extreme measures - shooting or treating trees with pesticides. The carcasses of killed birds are hung right there on the branches. The method is as effective as it is inhuman. The poison will kill even those who have nothing to do with the spoilage of cherries. And the sight of killed birds can seriously injure the psyche of children walking in the garden.
A few facts about the benefits of birds in the garden
Most of the birds living in the gardens feed on more than just cherries. Therefore, it is worth thinking about what they are eating all the time while there are no berries on the branches. Meanwhile, it is estimated that a pair of starlings eats up to 300 different beetles and larvae per day, most of which are pests. Especially a lot of birds work during the breeding period, for example, a sparrow at this time collects from 500 to 700 (!) Different insects, beetles, caterpillars, larvae per day.
Important! Wintering birds (sparrows, tits) in the cold season peck up most of the weed seeds. Therefore, birds are the foundation of a healthy garden.
A short video on how to protect cherries from birds below.
It is possible to protect cherries from birds, and extreme measures are not always needed for this. Sometimes a couple of simple homemade products are enough for the birds to leave the berries alone for a long time. This will not only save the harvest, but also not harm the birds themselves, who work daily to improve the garden and become pests only for a short time of ripening of berries.