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Nylon mesh for orchards and gardens

Nylon mesh for orchards and gardens

Photo posted on Facebook by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife on December 6, 2017, with the following title: “Good Deed of the Week: Nathan Graveline, CDFW wildlife biologist in our central region, received a call on Monday about a deer tangled in nylon mesh in an apple orchard in Tuolumne County. When Nathan arrived at the scene, he found the antlers of a fairly large buck entangled in the mesh with no way for the deer to free itself. Nathan intervened. He sedated the buck, cut the mesh, and freed it. Well done, Nathan! We humans take pride in our gardens, from potted succulents on our porches to several-acre orchards. We can control many aspects of gardening, but wildlife is harder to manage.

nylon netting prohibits the passage of wild animals
BAXTOP® netting prohibits wild animals from entering gardens and crops.

Protect Your Crops from Wildlife

A common method is to use mesh to keep birds away from trees and shrubs. Nylon mesh can be effective but can be deadly for animals if applied incorrectly. The holes in the mesh should be small enough that you can’t pass your finger through. Holes larger than that make it easy for birds, bats, and reptiles to get tangled and potentially strangle themselves. The mesh should also be securely attached to the plant and checked daily for trapped animals. You may need to cut the mesh to free the animal. Consider the mesh material as well. Thin monofilament mesh is among the most dangerous types for wildlife. Animal-proof meshes have become a topic in Australia.

Mesh to Deter Wildlife

Make sure to do the “finger test” by trying to pass your fingers through any mesh you find in a store. If you can pass a finger through, it’s probably not safe for wildlife. On a side note, we’ve found that “bird-safe mesh” often shades plants more than desired. Another safe method to deter wildlife is using a scarecrow. You can easily make a scarecrow with old clothes and wooden stakes or sticks. It doesn’t need to look like a realistic human but should be moved every few days. You can also use metal pie pans and specially designed garden tapes to scare birds away. Some people even place fake rubber snakes to deter birds.

BAXTOP® netting in crops
The holes in the BAXTOP® nylon netting should be so small that birds cannot pass through it and affect the crop.

Nylon Mesh Protects from Smaller Animals

If blocking and scaring animals isn’t your style, you can compromise and offer them their own plants as a “sacrifice.” Planting native species has many benefits, including serving as a food source for native wildlife. You can also offer them an extra berry bush or a couple of sunflowers a short distance from your prized crops. Regardless of the method you choose to coexist with our wild neighbors, do so responsibly and safely. Consider chemical applications. Birds, frogs, and lizards do a great job of controlling insects, so pesticides may be unnecessary. Herbicides and excess fertilizer can do more harm than good, especially if they run off into streams or rivers. Take a break from your hard work and enjoy watching your visitors. You might come up with more ideas just by identifying them.

Fill out the form below to let us know your questions or comments:

Photo posted on Facebook by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife on December 6, 2017, with the following title: “Good Deed of the Week: Nathan Graveline, CDFW wildlife biologist in our central region, received a call on Monday about a deer tangled in nylon mesh in an apple orchard in Tuolumne County. When Nathan arrived at the scene, he found the antlers of a fairly large buck entangled in the mesh with no way for the deer to free itself. Nathan intervened. He sedated the buck, cut the mesh, and freed it. Well done, Nathan! We humans take pride in our gardens, from potted succulents on our porches to several-acre orchards. We can control many aspects of gardening, but wildlife is harder to manage.

nylon netting prohibits the passage of wild animals
BAXTOP® netting prohibits wild animals from entering gardens and crops.

Protect Your Crops from Wildlife

A common method is to use mesh to keep birds away from trees and shrubs. Nylon mesh can be effective but can be deadly for animals if applied incorrectly. The holes in the mesh should be small enough that you can’t pass your finger through. Holes larger than that make it easy for birds, bats, and reptiles to get tangled and potentially strangle themselves. The mesh should also be securely attached to the plant and checked daily for trapped animals. You may need to cut the mesh to free the animal. Consider the mesh material as well. Thin monofilament mesh is among the most dangerous types for wildlife. Animal-proof meshes have become a topic in Australia.

Mesh to Deter Wildlife

Make sure to do the “finger test” by trying to pass your fingers through any mesh you find in a store. If you can pass a finger through, it’s probably not safe for wildlife. On a side note, we’ve found that “bird-safe mesh” often shades plants more than desired. Another safe method to deter wildlife is using a scarecrow. You can easily make a scarecrow with old clothes and wooden stakes or sticks. It doesn’t need to look like a realistic human but should be moved every few days. You can also use metal pie pans and specially designed garden tapes to scare birds away. Some people even place fake rubber snakes to deter birds.

BAXTOP® netting in crops
The holes in the BAXTOP® nylon netting should be so small that birds cannot pass through it and affect the crop.

Nylon Mesh Protects from Smaller Animals

If blocking and scaring animals isn’t your style, you can compromise and offer them their own plants as a “sacrifice.” Planting native species has many benefits, including serving as a food source for native wildlife. You can also offer them an extra berry bush or a couple of sunflowers a short distance from your prized crops. Regardless of the method you choose to coexist with our wild neighbors, do so responsibly and safely. Consider chemical applications. Birds, frogs, and lizards do a great job of controlling insects, so pesticides may be unnecessary. Herbicides and excess fertilizer can do more harm than good, especially if they run off into streams or rivers. Take a break from your hard work and enjoy watching your visitors. You might come up with more ideas just by identifying them.

Fill out the form below to let us know your questions or comments:

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