What bird netting systems work for you?

If there are bird netting systems that you think work well either for individual trees, a row of trees, or a block of trees including more than 1 row, I would be interested to hear your thoughts.

Thanks in advance.

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I have several kinds of netting. The lightweight plastic stuff would get stuck on everything when trying to put it up - it seems to have extra fingers reaching out and grabbing stuff, and it would tear easily. So I switched to more durable twisted nylon netting. But its really heavy which makes it also hard to get on. At this point I use the heavy netting on the blueberries; for my cherries and other fruits I put up scare tape just before ripening and that works pretty well and is much easier to put up.

I had problems with the thin green plastic stuff also. Apart from it getting stuck on things, it was also virtually invisible to the birds so they would get stuck in it. Cutting frantic birds out of plastic netting wasn’t what I wanted to be doing, so I just removed the netting. Birds haven’t been a serious problem for me so far so I haven’t investigated other options.

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I use standard BirdBlock from HD. BYOC lends itself to easy netting of fruit trees.
14 ft. x 45 ft. BirdBlock Protective Mesh Covering

If you want the good stuff that lasts 30 yrs get woven black polypropylene 30% shade cloth. It has fine mesh and doesn’t snag on anything. I have two apricot trees covered now for hail and bird protection. It rests right on the tree.

To cover an entire area with the cheapo bird netting this is the best system I’ve seen. It supports the netting with heavy monofilament fishing line pulled taunt via PVC tubing.

http://forums.gardenweb.com/discussions/1462391/tis-the-season-of-fruit

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Thanks for the thoughts, everyone. It’s helpful information.

Fruitnut, do you notice that the shade cloth impairs or delays ripening?

No adverse effects at 30% shade in this sunny dry climate. If birds are your only concern you can’t beat the system I linked above using the much lighter bird netting.

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We had a net similar the the one in the link, only larger. We pulled the net over 2 acres of blueberries and took it down at the end of the season for about 10 years. I had 12 foot post spaced around the perimeter of the field about every 30 feet with high tensile wire attached to the top of the posts. The net was pulled over the top of the wire. The net kept the birds out, but it was a real pain to put up and take down. At the end of the season the net was rolled up on 20 foot sections of 4 inch PVC. We tried alternate solutions before the net and nothing worked. When the Robbins showed up, the blueberry season ended about in about a week.

We shifted to early variety that ripen mostly before the birds arrive, so no more net. We still have some bird pressure and we hope to solve the bird problem with a Aircrow. This method was suggested by a very experienced large scale blueberry grower

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I only have a few blueberries getting ripe, but yesterday I walked over to check them out and watched a robin down a pink berry that I swear should not have fit in its beak. Here I am today searching for netting options, glad I’m not the first one to try and figure this out.

For the smaller shrubs, and not too many of them, I’ve had good success with the Lee Valley birdsafe netting.
Got ours on markdown and it works great. Not too heavy but keeps the hungry little pigs out. Haven’t had any get stuck in it either.
They still stand on top and eat what they can reach, but it’s the only reason we get any haskap.