[NAFEX] birds, raspberries, and other fruit

Alan Haigh alandhaigh at gmail.com
Tue Sep 9 13:05:50 EDT 2008

The species of birds that occupy any property, even a few miles apart, vary
quite a bit based on what I assume to be a lot of factors.  It gets more
complicated than this in that the same species of birds behave differently
in different locations.  I have clients who have a lot of issues with crows,
but on my site the only fruit they've ever been interested in is cherries.
This year I threw nets over a couple of  European plums for a client to save
the crop after crows began knocking the plums off the trees.  Same thing
happened on another site with Asian pears and another with peaches.  I have
tons of these fruits and plenty of crows around but they behave here and
have for many years.  I've had similar variable experiences with other bird
species at times.

My most destructive bird pest is the catbird which tends to leave my area
towards late Aug.  In general at many sites I have noticed that late summer
varieties miss a lot of bird predation as pressure decreases from many
species at this time here.  For me this would include Heritage red
raspberry, Satsuma Japanese plum, the later European plums (ripening after
Stanley).  Of course some years the yellow jackets pick up as birds drop
off, but not too much this year.

For Melissa, the fall bearing raspberries are also more disease resistant as
primocanes (ones that bear in fall for fall bearers) tend to be healthy.
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