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Open Access Publications from the University of California

The summer European starling problem in Tulare County

  • Author(s): Clark, William R.
  • et al.

Growing populations of starlings have been causing increasing summer damage to grapes and figs in Tulare County, CA, since 1960. Losses in specific grape plantings range from “slight” to nearing 80% loss. Trials of various control methods have shown mixed results. Of the most successful are trapping, or trapping combined with toxic bait. Where statis populations occur, or where starlings stage or gather before going to roost, the modified Australian crow trap has shown success. Exposing bait (fresh grapes, or raisins dipped in a toxic solution of DRC-1339) in conjunction with the use of a trap as a decoy cage has proved promising. Where trapping or baiting are not feasible, some sites have been adequately protected using carbide or acetylene exploders or even shell crackers.

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