Sparrows destroying my peas & beans?

What the heck!?! I'm home sick today, normally I'm at work this time of day (10am) so I don't know how common this is. I'm currently watching a bunch (family?) of sparrows grab various stems & vines in my pea & bean garden, shake the vines violently until they're uprooted, and then peck at the carnage. The plants have just started flowering (it's been a VERY late summer here in Canada) Are the sparrows going after an insect infestation or something? I don't think the birds are actually eating the plants, just grabbing them and shaking them.
Has anyone else seen this behaviour?
I've got bird netting over my fruit bushes, but I didn't think I'd have to protect my peas & beans from birds! From what I've seen so far this morning, I may not have any plants left by the end of the week
Thomas Dzubin
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Thomas Dzubin said:

I had all my peas pulled this spring when they were just sprouted. (It may have been a duck.)
House finches (and gold finches) would eat peck at various greens and eat the heads of broccoli.
House sparrows used to do severe damage to corn tassels, by eating the anthers. They seem to have undergone a major population decline here, though, and haven't been a problem recently.
I regularly have problems with starlings pecking and pulling at all various plants. They always seem to go after small squash plants (pecking out buds, putting holes in leaves). This year, they completely shredded a couple of leeks. This is only done by small groups of young birds that have been abandoned by their parents. I think the young birds are learning to fend for themselves. They do all sorts of rather goofy things until they either fail (and turn into something else's dinner) or succeed and can stop pecking at anything that looks remotely promising.
It may be that your birds scared up some type of food when they pulled at your plants -- and so they repeated that to the point of destruction.
There are so many birds in my garden that half the mulch seems to get tossed off the beds and into the paths every day. and any bare ground gets tramples by bird feet! Some things I have to bird net over every year just to get the seeds safely up and out of the ground.
Ever had a several dozen mourning doves rocket away when you've swung open the garden gate? (They always wait until the last minute before they leave.)
--
Pat in Plymouth MI ('someplace.net' is comcast)

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Have you tried winding a rubber snake on a pole nearby or hanging an AOL disk a few feet away?
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Pen said:

I've tried hanging old CD-roms in the garden; they seems to spook me more often than anything else.
And the garden already has a resident snake. (Who also spooks me sometimes, even though I actually like snakes!)
--
Pat in Plymouth MI ('someplace.net' is comcast)

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