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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Bird Damage to Fruit Crops: A Comparison of Several Deterrent Techniques

  • Author(s): Steensma, Karen
  • Lindell, Catherine
  • Leigh, Deanna
  • Burrows, Colleen
  • Wieferich, Shayna
  • Zwamborn, Elizabeth
  • et al.

Economic impacts, risk factors, and deterrent strategies related to fruit damage by birds were investigated in a four year study across North America. Here we focus primarily on bird management strategies tested in the Pacific Northwest, including visual deterrents such as hawk-kites, inflatable tube-men, and falconry. Fields protected by professional bird-abatement falconry showed less blueberry damage than non-falconry fields. Neither hawk kites nor kite-falconry combinations showed strong damage prevention. A pilot trial of inflatable tube-men in blueberries showed a potential deterrent effect in one of three blocks. Bird management strategies that are biodiversity-friendly, such as falconry and predator nest boxes, may also be useful in marketing fruit.

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