Proceedings of the Vertebrate Pest Conference
Evaluation of methyl anthranilate as a bird repellent in fruit crops
- Author(s): Avery, Michael L.
- et al.
Methyl anthranilate (MA) is a grape-flavored food additive that is aversive to birds. Previous studies had indicated that anthranilates can deter frugivorous birds but that anthranilates are phytotoxic. In this study, I tested the bird repellency to 2 MA formulations on blueberry plants in a large flight pen. Neither MA formulation protected the blueberries from damage by cedar waxwings (Bombycilla cedrorum) or European starlings (Sturnus vulgaris). The encapsulated formulation, however, was nonphytotoxic. Due to the on-going need for safe bird deterrent compounds, further development and testing of MA as a bird repellent on fruit is warranted. The most fruitful and cost-effective approach, however, might be to integrate MA use with other bird deterrent methods to lower the attractiveness of the cultivated fruit relative to available alternate foods.