Effectiveness of a Bird Gard System for Haskap Orchards
This past spring and summer we used a Bird Gard system in an effort to repel birds from our Haskap Orchard. We also sold a number of units to other Haskap growers for use in their orchards.
This post is a follow up of our previous post as to the effectiveness of the Bird Gard systems in our orchard and how these systems worked for other growers.
For us the system worked very well in repelling large numbers of birds. What we did experience is some fringe feeding from robins. There were roughly 3-5 robins who employed a quick snatch and fly away tactic for feeding on the berries (Haskap berries are one of a robins favorite food). This type of feeding occurred on the outside areas of the acoustic sounds. In other words they did not feed any where close to the Bird Gard system. No other species of birds were noticed near our orchard. We did observe blue jays near the area, but they avoided any areas covered by the acoustic sounds. Typically we would also have quite a few crows in the area, but when the Bird Gard system was activated they completely avoided our farm. We did observe regular visits from a red tailed hawk and two ospreys. They would show up pretty much everyday, either flying overhead or roosting in a tall tree.
The robins that were fringe feeding were completely paranoid and any movement in the orchard kept them away completely. Robins are accustomed to human activity and typically we could mow one side of the orchard and they would feed on the other side of the orchard. This behavior completely changed when the Bird Gard system was operating.
The customers who purchased Bird Gard systems also reported similar behavior for the problem birds in their orchards.
One customer had observed crows feeding on Haskap berries in the past and their system was effective in repelling them, but they did note that the crows were starting to figure it out towards the end of the harvest.
Starlings were causing a problem for another orchard and the Bird Gard system repelled them completely for the duration of their harvest.
Cedar waxwings were causing problems for another customer. The Bird Gard system repelled the majority of the waxwings, but there was some fringe feeding. Waxwings are experts at the tactic of snatching a berry and flying away.
In summary everyone was pleased with the results of the systems and no one experienced any technical difficulties with any of the units.
To try and reduce fringe feeding we are going to try out a newer type of visual deterrent in conjunction with the Bird Gard system. If the results of adding this particular visual deterrent is effective we will try to add this product to our retail line.
Please feel free to ask us any questions and we will certainly help with choosing a system for any type of orchard. Please see our contact page for details as how to get in touch with us.