How do farmers protect crops from birds? Find out here
Although often thought of as pests, birds can actually be very useful to farmers. Birds eat insects that can damage crops, and they also help spread pollen and seeds. However, when there are too many birds in an area, they can cause serious crop damage. Farmers use a variety of methods to protect their crops from birds, including scarecrows, netting and birdhouses. This article will tell you about these methods, so read on.
Using seed treatments
The birds are known to damage hundreds of acres of fields and sweet corn before they even have a chance to emerge. One of the ways farmers protect their crops from birds is through the use of seed treatments. Many farmers use them because they are an inexpensive way to keep birds away. This type of bird repellent for cornfields can be applied directly to the seeds before they are planted, and it works by giving off an unpleasant odor to birds. Birds don’t like this smell, so they won’t eat newly planted seeds. They move immediately after attempting to consume newly planted seeds, leaving your newly planted field untouched. However, the odor from these treatments will disappear over time as the corn grows and matures.
Another way farmers protect their crops from birds is to use scarecrows. Farmers have used scarecrows since the 1920s, and they often continue to use them to this day because they work so well. The majority of scarecrow designs commonly found in fields today are based on human forms, but some animals can also be used as a form of scarecrow. They usually feature a bunch of props that are supposed to look like a farmer. The idea is for the birds to spot these characters and believe they are real people or other threats, so they leave the area alone. This design is used to scare away a variety of birds, but is more effective with smaller bird species.
Many farmers also protect their crops from birds by using netting. These types of bird repellents can be placed on crops or hung around trees and other structures. The net tends to be very thin, but it can actually be quite effective. Larger birds seeking to eat crops are often caught in these nets because they are unable to break through them. However, small birds usually fly over them without problems. If you plan to use nets, make sure they are only used around small birds.
Using natural repellents
Farmers also use repellents like oils or powders made from natural ingredients. The idea is that natural repellents irritate birds when they come into contact with them, so they leave the area on their own. These products can be sprayed on a particular area or applied all at once, to protect crops in that area. They are known to be inexpensive and effective against small birds. Usually the ingredients used include things like garlic, red pepper, and capsaicin. To ensure that these products are truly effective, you will need to apply them regularly, if not daily.
Using chemical repellents
Additionally, some farmers also protect their crops from birds by using chemical repellents. These products are usually sprayed around the area they are meant to protect, and they often contain things like methyl anthranilate or anthraquinone. These chemicals can be quite dangerous for the environment, so it’s important to remember not to use them too much too often. These are generally the most expensive products of all, but they can be quite effective against various types of birds of varying size.
By using technology
Another thing that farmers often use to protect their crops from birds is some type of technology. It’s usually something that emits ultrasonic waves, which humans can’t hear, but birds can hear. The idea behind this type of product is that it will emit waves that scare away smaller bird species like sparrows and blackbirds. The sound waves irritate the birds and leave the area, but they will not affect other animals. This type of product can be used with other methods, and it is adjustable and easy to set up.
Using sound cannons
In addition to using scarecrows to scare away birds, many farmers also use sound cannons. These also work by making loud sounds that humans cannot hear, but birds can. This will cause them to leave the area immediately, so they won’t be hit by the cannon’s sonic blast. While this method definitely works, it’s important to note that it should be used sparingly. Using this method too often can cause birds to habituate to it and become immune, so you’ll need a variety of methods if you want a long-term solution.
Don’t forget that birds can also be useful
Although birds can be harmful, they can also be very helpful. Birds are often used to reduce the population of other insects considered harmful to humans and their crops. This is especially true when it comes to snails, slugs and moths. In addition to this, birds are also used for pest control in orchards and vineyards. An example is to provide a nesting area for barn owls near fruit trees. Owls eat many rodents that eat these crops, so having them nearby can be very beneficial to farmers. It is important to know the advantages that birds can have, in order to be more objective when it comes to attracting or deterring birds. That’s why you shouldn’t kill the birds and you should only try to attract them if possible.
There are hundreds of different methods that can be used to control birds, so there is no one-size-fits-all solution. Farmers should try to find a combination of methods and change them frequently to stay ahead of the birds.