There are a lot of factors that go into producing a successful and bountiful harvest from your fruit trees. One of the more exasperating of tasks can often be keeping local wildlife from stealing the fruits of your labor—literally. For decades, farmers have deployed various tricks to deter our winged friends from picking apart fruit and leaving behind damaged, unsellable products. Bird netting is among one of the most common bird repellent methods. While it has been proven to be effective, it isn’t without its fair share of problems, either.
Before you purchase expensive rolls of netting, compare the pros and cons of bird netting to determine if this tactic is right for you.
Pros of Bird Netting
Bird netting has been a staple in the farming industry for a reason—it works. Netting has a history of doing exactly what it is meant to do: keep pesky birds out of your fruit trees. Here are some of the reasons why farmers choose to net their fruit trees:
- It adds a physical barrier: Bird netting is a meshed material that is designed to be wrapped completely around your fruit trees or crops to provide a physical barricade between hungry birds and your crop. Before purchasing, you’ll want to research the types of birds in your area to make sure that you purchase the right sized netting. You’ll also need to wrap your tree in its entirety, so birds don’t simply swoop in from underneath.
- It can be reused: While the process can be time-consuming and requires gentle and patient removal, it is possible to remove and store bird netting between harvests. Exactly how many years you can get out of your bird netting will depend on the elements it is exposed to, any damages that might occur, and how well it is maintained.
- It is environmentally friendly: Generally, bird netting is a safe method to deter birds from fruit trees. Except for some occasions where a bird may get tangled in loose netting, or stuck in a tear or hole, bird netting does not present any harm to birds or other animals.
Cons of Bird Netting
If you’ve ever spoken to someone who has used bird netting, you’ll probably hear them gripe about one or two of these things. Netting is effective, but can be very difficult and isn’t always worth the added effort. Here are some of the reasons why farmers are seeking alternatives to this meshed mess.
- It is expensive: Netting your fruit trees isn’t cheap. The initial cost of netting can be quite a bit, especially for smaller farmers on a limited budget and who haven’t worked with netting before. It also makes it all the more important that you select the right size and type of netting and that it is properly maintained. Damaging netting or buying the wrong one can have major financial consequences.
- It is easily damaged: Bird netting is constructed with a delicate mesh that can easily incur rips, holes and other damage that allows birds to get inside your fruit trees. Worse yet, if tears aren’t addressed quickly, they can easily spread, making the netting almost irreparable.
- It is difficult to install and remove: his is perhaps one of the biggest reasons why farmers shy away from netting their fruit trees. Installing bird netting requires a long, tedious process where the farmer has to manually wrap each tree, taking care as to not rip or tear the delicate material and to ensure a proper buffer space between budding fruits and hole openings. In many cases, farmers have to build frames around the tree so that the net isn’t simply sitting on top of fruit welcoming birds to peck away at it. At the end of the season, it then requires another long and gentle removal process to prevent any long tears and rips so that it can be stored and used for the following season.
SEE ALSO: Bird Netting Versus Bird Spray
Choosing liquid bird repellent over bird netting
Bird netting can be very effective at protecting your fruit trees from birds, but for many farmers, it simply isn’t worth the cost and hassle. Instead, many farmers are turning to an easier, more cost-effective alternative of liquid bird repellent. Our professional liquid bird repellent at Avian allows you to almost instantly deter birds in a manner that is easy, quick and safe for you, your crops and the birds. You can even opt for a time-release fog treatment so that your crops are automatically sprayed at the ideal time without any additional effort from you, allowing you to get back to all of the other work that goes into maintaining a farm.
Contact us today if you are ready for an easier, better alternative to bird netting.