Heron are beautiful, but they can be a pest at your pond! They can eat fish, frogs, and even squirrels! If you find a fish missing with no trace what so ever...you may have a heron. Here are some tips for keeping heron out of your pond.
What to do?
- Scarecrow - You might try a "scarecrow", a motion activated sprinkler that should blast the heron with water when he walks up. However, they can be persistent and once they figure out that it won't hurt them, they don't mind it.
- Decoy -Another option is a heron decoy. They do figure out that they are not a real bird though.
- Fishing line -Sometimes fishing line tied tautly around the edges of the pond help. They can't see it and it startles them when their leg hits it.
- Hiding Places - One of the best ways to help your fish avoid the long and pointy beak of the heron is to provide them coverage. Lilies, floating plants and a fish cave all provide places for the fish to hide and make it harder for a heron to see the fish.
- Talk radio - Heron also won't come around when there are people nearby. Leaving a radio on a talk station can help deter them.
- Dogs - Dogs are an excellent deterrent for heron! If it works to leave Fluffy out in the yard, he will keep that heron away!
- Netting - Putting a netting tautly over the pond will keep bird out. You won't have to leave it on forever, but it may take a while for heron to get the message!
- Trees - Plant some trees and put some bushes on the side of the pond that faces open space. Heron need a minimum of about 6 feet to land in. An open space with out trees makes a great landing strip which allows them to walk up carefully to the pond for a snack. Ponds with trees around it have less trouble with heron.
A combination of some of these will help keep your fish safe!
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