MOFishin
Senior Member
Posts: 126
Joined: Thu May 05, 2016 1:33 pm
Location: Central Missouri 6A

Birds eating tomatoes?

Some of the uppermost branches of my tomato plants have been seemingly just chopped off. It's high up enough that it could only be birds or deer. And I would think the deer would eat more. I have shiny (And sometimes noisy) things flapping in the breeze, but it hasn't seemed to be enough or a deterrent so far.
Any advice/insight? Other than this problem, my tomatoes are by far the healthiest looking plants in the garden, so I'd like to find a solution ASAP.
Thanks! :)

imafan26
Mod
Posts: 11768
Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2013 8:32 am
Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Re: Birds eating tomatoes?

We call bulbuls rats with wings. They are particularly fond of Hawaiian chilies, papaya, and tomatoes, especially big one. Usually they eat the cherry tomatoes too, but the cherry tomatoes produce more so it is not that noticeable. However, they will attack every large tomato. At first they go after the ripe ones but once they get a taste for it, they go after the green ones too. Someone said they are after the water, but there is a lot of water here, so I think they just like them period.

If you have dumb birds bird netting will work. If the birds are smart you have to make sure you have a support frame so they cannot get the fruit that is close to the netting and that the netting goes all the way to the ground so they cannot get under it. I tried bagging the fruit, but the birds go after anything that is wrapped and tear it open. The wrapping is not a deterrent, it just tells the birds that where to look.

Fake owls don't work, the birds will just sit on it. Pie pans CD's and cassette tape does work temporarily until they figure out that does not hurt them. A cat in the garden that likes to chase birds works.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

MOFishin
Senior Member
Posts: 126
Joined: Thu May 05, 2016 1:33 pm
Location: Central Missouri 6A

Re: Birds eating tomatoes?

Thanks for the advice.
Pie pans and cd's are what I have up now. I just moved a pie pan directly next to the most affected area yesterday though. I have a cat who sometimes stalks the garden area as well.



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