There are a lot of factors that go into producing a successful and bountiful harvest from your fruit trees. One of the more exhausting tasks can often be keeping local wildlife from stealing the fruits of your labor—literally. Bird netting is among one of the most common bird repellent methods. While it has been proven to be effective, fruit tree netting 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 popular for bird control 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 use fruit tree netting:
It adds a physical barrier: Bird netting is a meshed material that is designed to be wrapped completely around your fruit trees or crops. Netting provides 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.
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. If set up properly, 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 seek alternatives to fruit tree netting:
It is expensive: Netting your fruit trees isn’t cheap. The initial cost of netting can be quite a lot, especially if you are on a limited budget and haven’t worked with netting before. It also makes it all the more important to select the right size and type of netting, and that it is properly maintained. Damaging netting or buying the wrong type can have major financial consequences.
It is easily damaged: Bird netting is constructed with a delicate mesh that can easily form rips, holes, and other damage that allows birds to get to your fruit trees. Worse yet, if tears aren’t addressed quickly, they can easily spread, making the netting almost irreparable. If your netting has multiple rips after a season, it may not be reusable anymore.
It is difficult to install and remove: This is perhaps one of the biggest reasons why farmers shy away from netting their fruit trees. Installing bird netting can be a long, tedious process where the farmer has to manually wrap each tree. Ensuring proper space between budding fruits and hole openings is important so that birds don’t have access to fruit on the edges of your trees. At the end of the season, netting requires another long and gentle removal process to prevent any long tears and rips.
Other Factors to Consider
If you’re planning on using netting, make sure to cover the tree so that birds can’t get in underneath the netting, or stuck in loose netting. Often, birds can get trapped, and in some cases injured, from bird netting that is not installed properly. Be cautious of other animals like snakes and squirrels getting tangled as well. Sometimes, it’s best to build a frame around a tree for netting. This approach ensures there is complete coverage of a tree.
SEE ALSO: Bird Netting Versus Bird Spray
Choosing liquid bird repellent over bird netting
Many farmers are turning to an easier, more cost-effective alternative to bird netting. 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 birds. You can even opt for a time-release fog treatment. That way, your crops are automatically sprayed at the ideal time without any additional effort from you.
Contact us at 888.868.1982 today if you are ready for an easier, better alternative to bird netting.