The perils of bird netting

We put bird netting over the blackberries this summer to protect them from avian marauders. We do this every year. It’s never been a problem before, but for some reason, it’s causing problems for small creatures this year. A few days ago, a black swallowtail butterfly had gotten caught under the netting, and I wound up having to cut a big hole to free it. This evening, I was checking on my sunflowers when I heard a whirring noise nearby and discovered a pretty little female hummingbird trapped between the netting and the brambles. As I pulled the netting taut so I could tear a hole in it to free my tiny captive, she got scared, darted back toward the fence, and found her way out.

I’ll have to figure out a safer way to protect my blackberry crop from birds next year. I like berries, but I like hummingbirds and butterflies more, and I don’t want to endanger the pretty little creatures that are coming to pollinate my sunflowers. (Come to think of it, maybe that’s the problem: We didn’t have sunflowers behind the fence the past two years, so we probably didn’t have a lot of butterflies and hummingbirds back there.)

In other garden news, there’s a big, fat toad hanging out under the cucumber and tomato vines. I suspect it’s stuffing itself with mosquitoes, which like to hide in the cool shade under those big cucumber leaves.


2 thoughts on “The perils of bird netting”

  1. Maybe it is the type of netting you are using to cover the berries that is the problem and is what is causing the hummingbirds to become caught. Have you used netting in the past? If so, did you have this same problem?

    Another suggestion would be to ask your local garden center for some possible solutions to solve this problem. Or maybe even you local gardening club could offer you some suggestions.

    Good luck with solving this problem!

  2. I’ve gone round about this as well. Considered netting my currants and gooseberries against the hordes of birds which surround Mas des Rigolos in the early summer.

    But I’ve decided that as much as I wish the birds wouldn’t ransack my garden, I like having them around…


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