Keep Birds Out of Your Garden

Edited by Ian Gabriel T. Tolledo, Eng, Lynn, Jim_Hull and 6 others

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Those pesky birds ruined your plants again? While birds are welcome guests in most gardens, some become over-familiar and more adventurous over time - munching on your newly planted vegetables and tearing away at your vines and fruits. It's high time you remind those birdies who the boss is! Below are techniques you can use to keep them away for good.

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Ways to Repel Birds

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    Cast netting
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    Netting is one proven way of deterring birds from any garden. However, to prevent snagging on thorns and twigs, you need to construct a framework to cover the plants. Some sticks you can use are bamboo poles, tall stakes or fence posts. Spread the netting over the posts and onto the plants, making sure that no plants are being snagged by either the net or support sticks. Anchor the net to the ground with big rocks or bent wires to protect it from the wind. If your garden rows aren't very long, it is better to use v-shaped tents above the rows for seed protection until their roots deepen, and can no longer be pulled up by birds.
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    Scare tactics
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    There are several scare materials that you can use to scare those problematic birds out of your garden. Below are some of the most effective methods:
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    1. Balloons.
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      You can purchase vinyl balloons with faces, either online or in garden centers. Or you can draw faces on plain balloons yourself. Tie 12" of string and them attach them to your garden posts. The string will ensure they move in the wind, which is what scares the birds.
    2. Plastic owls.
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      Found in your local hardware stores and garden shops. Owls are natural predators of other birds and they will keep the birds away for some time. Keep moving the owl around the garden, as the clever birds will soon realize that it's not the real thing.
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    Cat replicas
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    Some gardeners use cat replicas to scare birds away. But if you own a trained cat, that makes it a lot more interesting. Let it free to hunt and chase away those birds. Just make sure they don't damage your garden while doing so.  
    1. Scarecrow.
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      Ahh, you knew this was coming all along, didn't you? A plain old scarecrow is perhaps the most effective device you can use. Find some used clothes and a hat that covers the face and make your scarecrow by using two sticks as a frame. Don't forget to move it every other day. If it scares the crows, which are really clever birds, it will scare them all.
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    Tech-solutions
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    Bird-buster revolutionized garden protection with their new invention, the screech owl. The owl spins in the wind and contains a microchip inside that produces the sound of an attacking predator. This is sure to scare even the bravest of birds. Find it here Bird buster
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    The old way
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    One technique that has been used in the past for repelling pesky birds is making them drunk. Soak a few quarts of dried corn in whiskey and simply scatter it around your garden. Have you ever seen a drunk bird? You will if you try this.
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Types Of Pesky Birds And Their Favorite Plants

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    Pigeons
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    Mostly cabbage family plants, raspberries, peas, blackcurrants and gooseberries.
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    Crows
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    Peas, corns and other seeds.
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    Bullfinches
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    Fruit trees (they strip the buds)
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    Sparrows (not jack)
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    Fruit trees (they strip the buds)
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    Blackbirds
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    Strawberries, apples, cherries, pears and any type of red berries like mountain ash, cotoneaster and pyracantha
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    Starlings
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    Cherries
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Bird-Repelling Products

If you can afford it, you can make use of these technologically enhanced products to protect your precious garden from those pesky birds. They won't stand a chance! Below are some devices you can use:

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    Birdshield
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    You can purchase this from Bird-X Inc. Here's a link: Birdshield. This product is used to spray onto plants and gives off a bitter taste which will not sit well with those pesky birds. However, it requires frequent applications, especially after it's rained.
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    Roost inhibitor
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    These can range from spikes to sticky fluids that will stop birds from roosting. Birds are known to naturally seek landing strips or places they can land and relax. This could be your garden posts, trees and vines. You can try this product, bird spikes! Yay!Bird Spikes.
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    Ultrasonic repellent
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    Emits a sound that birds cannot stand. This is safe for humans, as we normally don't detect the emissions from this machine at all. Find it here: Ultrasonic Repellent.
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Tips, Tricks And Warnings

  • Visual scare devices only do so much. The problem is that eventually, birds can get used to anything that doesn't change or move. To make these tactics effective for a longer period, you have to move things around. Use more than just one of the suggestions, and rotate every two days, if you can.
  • Although birds can be a problem in your garden, they can also be garden allies, eating other pesky invaders such as slugs, snails, grubs and other harmful insects.
  • Know that these birds are in your garden due to their primal instincts. Don't take it personally, and don't wage war on all of them.

Questions and Answers

Why do birds no longer come to feed?

Birds no longer come to feed in my garden.

To attract birds to your garden or to the window of your house, you have to create conditions that will attract them, and keep them coming back:

  • Create or build a bird feeder, or several.
  • Put appropriate food into the bird feeder.

To build a bird feeder, you can use a simple average-sized plastic bottle. Cut it in the middle at an angle and cover all of the sharp angles with a single-sided duct tape so that birds can perch there as well.

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Fill the bird feeder with crumbled bread, grain, and sunflower seeds. For full enjoyment, make sure you can observe the bird feeder from your window or garden. You can hang it on a tree branch by making four holes in the bird feeder and running a thread or a thin rope through these holes. Make sure that the bird feeder maintains balance. You can also attach the bird feeder to your window.

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It is important to let birds know that it is safe to approach food. Do not approach the birds, and do not scare them by rapid motions or shouting.

It is also possible that birds stopped coming to your garden owing to the nesting period of birds: they hatch eggs and cannot leave their nests for long. Also, if you had a bird feeder, they might have not liked the food or the amount of it. Experiment with food types.

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Before you put bird food out, do a little research. Different seeds will attract different birds. It's also important to note that it's a commitment to feed birds. Once you start, you should never let the feeders go empty.

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Want to repel birds from my balcony.

I live in a strata building and recently a neighbor decided to keep some lorikeets. The problem is, since he did all other birds are attracted to the building leaving droppings everywhere. I love birds and I don't want to harm them, I just would like to find something they don't like or are scared of to avoid them turning my balcony in a mess. Thank you very much. Kind regards

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You can install bird nets on your balcony that cover open balconies by nailing nets from outside. These are easily available and people come to install them.

How can I keep birds out of my garden. Especially sparrows?

These birds eat the leaves of my peas and beans, which destructs the plants.. I am in Namibia where products you might offer could possibly not be available at shops here.. I am using pest control spray but it doesn't help much. I don't know how to create a scary figure as you proposed

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What is the solution for birds eating flowers of my passion fruits?

I have tried: Used scarecrows. I think it was caused by: Birds are eating my passion fruit flowers and I want to keep them away.

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We have a 1-acre plot with numerous fruit trees. We are plagued by the sulfur crested cockatoo.

We have fruit trees and the sulfur crested cockatoos are stripping the apple trees. The apples are not ripe and they've become a large flock of 20 or so birds. They strip the trees bare. The plums are ripening and they will be attacking them next. The cockatoos normally strip the pine trees but are now taking a liking to the fruit trees here in Ulverstone, Tasmania.

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How to protect my passion fruit vine from birds?

Birds are eating my passion fruits before they get ripe. Is there a solution to prevent them? I have tried: A pesticide called 'tresspass'. I think it was caused by: I don't know

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Categories : Gardening

Recent edits by: Nuance, Doug Collins, zairebyer

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