Birds Don't Eat Berries

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They don't eat them. They ruin them. They taste them. They peck them. They mutilate them... but they don't eat them.
If they ate the berries they would get full and have to stop.
As I now take all the the pecked berries and lay them next to the birdbath -- where they are ignored -- I would like to know if there are any other good ideas on how to discourage them?
This seems to mostly be robins eating the blackberries. I think some people use netting but it seems that that would be a mess to handle. How about something that would vigorously wave a flag and chime every few minutes? I may have to build something.
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Not long ago, some folks hung their unsolicited CD's to rattle and flash in the wind. works yill the birds adapt.
Commercial growers (no Close neighbors) use carbide cannons set to fire intermittantly.
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On Sat, 17 Jul 2004 18:32:45 UTC, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com (FarmerDill) opined:

As you seem to have only a small number of berry trees, you might try setting up a repeating recording of crows in an inexpensive MP3 player, and hang the player inside or near the foliage of the tree(s), If you have summer rain where you are, you could put the player in a plastic sandwich bag to keep it dry.
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galt snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (Dave) wrote:

Owl decoys work for some people, but your best bet is just to cover the vines with some bird netting. It's inexpensive. :-)
Good luck and you have my sympathies!!!
K.
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galt snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com writes:

I've heard of folks using very real-looking plastic owls with good success, so good their bird feeders weren't being visited.
Are you in town? If not, perhaps you could use something similar to the gun-popper used for starlings in orchards, annoying but effective.
Question: Do the birds have a good water supply? If not, put out water for them, preferably in a semi-protected location (bushes, trees, etc., nearby). It may be they are just thirsty which would explain the pecks and not eating them. Perhaps your bird bath is too exposed for them for some reason . . .have they been using it? If they've been using the bird bath, then that's not their problem. It's too bad that there are not cats in your area that love to frequent the blackberry area, hungry and aggressive cats.
I can totally sympathize. With our unusually cold weather, my apricot tree had a bumper crop, even with a fourth of the tree lost with the weight of the ice. Note I said "had." Squirrels, though I'm convinced it is a single squirrel, are systematically destroying the apricots. He doesn't eat them, just takes out a bite and tosses them to the ground. In fact, he will break off a small branch and drop it, hit my granddaughters on the head one day when they were eating lunch at their picnic table! The other squirrels go into the live animal trap and get a new home, with water, food and shelter, but this ---- one never comes to the ground. He will actually start scolding me when I go outside which is one reason I'm sure it's only the one. You'd think he would have figured out after the first few dozen that these are *not* walnuts! It was bad enough with the green apricots, but now, with them starting to ripen (top of the tree first, of course), there is going to be a real hornet/wasp problem. Already, there are hundreds of ants congregating under the tree. I'm about to expand the chicken pen to under the tree for the next month or so. This entire thing is so disgusting since I'd have been able to give literally boxes of apricots away. It's not likely we'll get any at all at this rate. It's to the point we are talking past hundreds of 'cots on the ground. Grrrrrr.
If I lived outside the city limits, one well-placed bullet would solve the problem, or more likely some bird shot and a hammer for when it fell. It doesn't sneak around at all, but actually seems to enjoy annoying us. The only thing that scoots it for a short time is a good strong shot from the garden hose, but he's soon back.
Glenna who sure considered the bird shot over 4th of July weekend!
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snipped-for-privacy@pmug.org (Glenna Rose) wrote:

A plain old crossman air rifle with either BB's or pellets are quiet enough to use in town. I'm not supposed to fire firearms within the city limits either, but a BB gun works wonders and _will_ bring down a squirrel if you are a good shot. Pump the rifle 10 to 15 pumps.
Oh, and squirrel is delicious. ;-d. Wet them prior to skinning to prevent hair getting all over the meat. It's a nice little trick. Then after cleaning, I quarter them and braise them slowly in a little olive oil with lemon pepper......
No, I don't shoot many squirrels, just ones that are being pests!!!
Air rifles are about $60.00 at Wal-mart.
HTH? K.
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Glenna Rose wrote: ......................................

What a pain. I think I would have found a way to get rid of that guy by now. This reminds me of my mother's complaint about her cherry tree. She has a North Star cherry and has to surround it completely with a net. Even then, chipmunks climb up the tree and pick the cherries. They don't want the fruit, they are after the seed. My mother finds hundreds of perfectly pitted cherries beneath the tree. (She can't bring herself to use them.) ;-)
Steve
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You deliberately grow blackberries?
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Claire Petersky
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What's wrong with growing blackberries? They make fine jam.
Ray
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You must live in an area where they are not a noxious weed. If I want to make jam, I can go to any vacant lot, park, or verge and pick. But I must be ever-vigilent to keep them out of my yard -- a few weeks of neglect, and I've got vines sprouting once again from the edge of the fence.
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Claire Petersky
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Sort of like multiflora roses, eh? I have heard nasty things about them, but they don't seem to be a problem here. I guess competition in the plant world is so stiff here that none of the 'noxious weeds' that I hear about can really get a good toehold (roothold?). We have lots of the plants that are called 'noxious weeds' elsewhere, but they seem to find their niche and stay put around here.
Ray
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wrote:

Hmmm... the thorny blackberries can be troublesome but they like sun and seem to mostly propagate through the root system so this limits their spread to adjacent sunny areas.
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On 8 Sep 2004 05:13:37 -0700, galt snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (Dave) wrote:

Ha! They most certainly do not limit themselves around here. They're sneaky little bastards, too. You no sooner get them stomped in one place, but they pop up in another part of the yard.
At least kudzu is brazen; it announces its presence by waving its fronds about insolently in the air so it can be easily spotted and properly exterminated.
Penelope
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wrote:

If I lived in the south, I could probably feed all my goats for free.
If someone knocked on your door and asked for permission to harvest your kudzu vines, what would you say? How about if they want to put some goats into your field that's overgrown with multiflora roses or blackberries?
Ray
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Part of the reason why I have to deal with blackberries to the extent that I do is because our next door neighbor's little girl died about nine years ago. After she passed on, they quit doing any yard work, and blackberries completely engulfed their back yard. They sold the house about five years ago, and the new neighbors did their best to completely hack out the blackberries and start over again. Despite the fact that there are no visible vines, the roots are still there, throwing out shoots in their yard and ours, on top of any seeds passing birds might happen to drop our way.
When the neighbor's yard was completely taken over with blackberries, I considered buying them a goat. They might not have even noticed for a long time, as the blackberry take over was nearly complete. But I'm worried that a goat in our own back yard would soon be munching on things I'd like to keep, as opposed to things I'd like to have taken down.
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weedy-problem is dealt with... have a barbeque!!
Kelly Paul Graham.
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Chances are, we'll have a buckling or two for sale next year. Any toggenburgs we get won't be able to be registered, anyhow. A neutered male goat is just the thing for eating lots of plant matter.
Ray Drouillard
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On Wed, 8 Sep 2004 10:40:39 -0400, "Ray Drouillard"

You know, people talk about feeding kudzu to goats all the time, but every goat I've ever known would only eat kudzu if it couldn't jump fence and get something it liked better.

I'd say "kudzu! Tell me where and I'll get the Round Up!"
My neighbor and I nipped the kudzu that was along the fence in the bud, so to speak. Got the poison ivy, too.
Blackberry is tricksy and sly, as I mentioned, it sneaks in and sprouts all over the place, one sneaky cane at a time

Well, the multiflora rose is out front. If they want to feed their goat and can keep it out of the other flower beds, they're welcome to try. Manure is welcome in my yard, but if it eats my peppers, Vulgar Words Will Be Spoken.
Penelope
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but it is easier if they are right in your backyard. Blackberries are not so aggressive in Michigan. I have to hack the stuff threatening to choke them if I want to have them in my fencerows.
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Even here in hoy, humis eastern Texas. I've never seen inpenetrable thickets of blackberries!
Kelly Paul Graham
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