Pest and Predator Solutions

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Talven
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12 Aug 2019, 08:22

Just wondering what everyone does to keep pests and predators away from their birds. Concrete floors or 500 - 600mm deep bricks/mouse proof wire help in the aviary but they aren't a sure fire solution. Some pests can bypass that all together such as ants which is what you use Coopex for if you can. What do you do to keep away the larger predators such as raptors,cats or foxes? What can be done to keep away the introduced birds that are vermin such as starlings, blackbirds and sparrows?

I'm sure you all have had run ins with some of what I've mentioned and come up with inventive solutions. Would love to hear the horror stories and the successes. I'm lucky here as cats and foxes don't do well with all the dogs. All of my neighbours as well as myself have dogs so they stay well away. Too far from the creek for the Tiger snakes to come thankfully.

Introduced birds and raptors are my current issue. The feathered vermin come after the dropped seed. Native birds come for it too. All these birds on the ground are bringing in the local Kites which then go after the larger birds. As you would imagine this scares the crap out of the caged birds who can't escape. Worried I'll lose some to self inflicted injuries or just fear.

Suggestions anyone?
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Brisbane_Finches_333
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12 Aug 2019, 08:49

Cat silhouettes? Many americans have them to scare off larger birds at oudoor bird feed stations.
Keeper of Star Finches, Blue Faced Parrot Finches, African Firefinches, Cuban Finches and King Quail
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Tiaris
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12 Aug 2019, 08:58

Double wired external panels where ever you have open sections are the only sure protection from larger predators.
I have my walkway along the front of the aviaries and a wire mesh ceiling below an enclosed raised roof so no large predators can access my birds. Occasionally the finches get a scare if a kookaburra lands on the aviary but they know they are safe so don't get alarmed by butcherbirds, hawks, etc. calling or flying by.
The largest wild bird I've had get into the covered roof section is the occasional wren squeezing in to clean up spiders or redbrow when I had redbrows in the aviaries. They inevitably find their way out under a roof corrugation.
In the past I have waged war with the various predators when I had unprotected conventional aviaries, but decided to just put a bit of thought into building the aviaries so that it is physically impossible for them to have an impact. It makes a pleasant change to appreciate and enjoy the carnivorous wild birds who live here without treating them as the enemy. We have one grey-backed butcherbird who sometimes lands on my head or shoulder while I'm on the back verandah, grey goshawks regularly nest within 20m of my aviaries & we also have a pair of white-breasted sea-eagles who have nested on our property every year since we have been here & they often fly over the aviaries (the only time these scared my finches was when one of them dropped a large 2m stick onto the roof of the aviary from about 50m up when I was feeding them - made me jump too).
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noah.till
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12 Aug 2019, 09:31

I use cheap black netting along the front of my aviary with a 20cm gap between it and the aviary wire. Also to deter magpies and other birds, I use a cap gun which makes them take off pretty quickly, and surprisingly my birds don't freak out (must be used to it)
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Javan Munia and Black Rumped Double bar Breeding Project
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Brisbane_Finches_333
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12 Aug 2019, 09:42

I'm really surprised this doesn't happen to my birds because we had a bucherbird nest in the aviary site before we got it put in. Only wild birds that visit the aviary are bush turkeys, spotted turtle doves and the occasional currawong.
Keeper of Star Finches, Blue Faced Parrot Finches, African Firefinches, Cuban Finches and King Quail
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noah.till
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12 Aug 2019, 09:44

Brisbane_Finches_333 wrote:
12 Aug 2019, 09:42
I'm really surprised this doesn't happen to my birds because we had a bucherbird nest in the aviary site before we got it put in. Only wild birds that visit the aviary are bush turkeys, spotted turtle doves and the occasional currawong.
I guess they have not realised yet that there is a cage full of little snacks, how long have you had your aviary in for?
Downs Bird Breeders Association and Queensland Finch Society Member
2018 Australian Birdkeepers Magazine Young Birdkeeper
Javan Munia and Black Rumped Double bar Breeding Project
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Brisbane_Finches_333
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12 Aug 2019, 09:46

Almost a year now.
Keeper of Star Finches, Blue Faced Parrot Finches, African Firefinches, Cuban Finches and King Quail
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noah.till
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12 Aug 2019, 09:55

Ok, it took about 2 years for the local butcher birds, hawks and magpies to realise what little goodies are flying around
Downs Bird Breeders Association and Queensland Finch Society Member
2018 Australian Birdkeepers Magazine Young Birdkeeper
Javan Munia and Black Rumped Double bar Breeding Project
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Brisbane_Finches_333
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12 Aug 2019, 10:02

Well, as the QFS handbook said, we do kinda create a 'garden of eden' situation for predators. There's food, water, shelter, and best of all, fresh meat that keeps on getting topped up again and again.
Keeper of Star Finches, Blue Faced Parrot Finches, African Firefinches, Cuban Finches and King Quail
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finchbreeder
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12 Aug 2019, 10:46

The netting in front of wire solution seems to have stopped the big Goshawk from having any more snacks. (Mum's show budgies) But she is still hanging round scaring them. Local Raptor relocator will do so as soon as someone can catch the pest. But the problem has grown since the Dept of Conservation started taking over local stations and not maintaining the windmills at the same time as the rabbits have been heavily baited. No feed or water so Raptors and Cockies all moving in closer and closer to housing. Easy partial solution - the Govt Depts maintain the windmills and the birds will have a water supply.
LML

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