Are you struggling to counter the problem of birds eating grass seeds in your garden?
Birds are lovely creatures that are good to have around our gardens, but they sometimes pose a nuisance. You will get a taste of their imperfect manners, especially when trying to spruce your garden with a brand new lawn.
We have got you covered. This guide offers you tangible tips that will help stop birds from eating grass seed in your yard.
1. Cover Your Lawn
An easy way to prevent birds from eating your grass seeds would be to lay a physical barrier on your lawn. The physical barrier comes in handy in preventing birds from getting to your grass seeds.
A cover on your lawn also has the end effect of hiding the seeds from the birds, saving you the trouble of having to chase them away.
Let’s get down to some of the ways you can cover grass seed in your lawn.
Mulching is a typical routine management practice gardeners use to retain moisture in their soils, maintain temperature levels and also suppress weeds for healthy plant growth.
But if you didn’t know, mulching has also got another use that you could quickly adapt. It’s an effective barrier against hungry birds that want to peck your grass seeds.
You could go for different mulching materials, but you risk infesting your soil with more weeds and pests.
For effective results, use the certified straw mulch. The mulch is weed-free, keeping you worry-free about new weeds on your farm.
Scatter layers of the mulch in the areas of the garden where you have grown your seeds. Make sure to cover 75% of your soil with mulch. Remove the mulch once the seeds start germinating.
Transparent Tarpaulin Sheets
If, by any chance, you are trying to grow your grass seeds during spring or fall, using a transparent tarpaulin sheet is your best option in keeping the birds off your grass seeds. This also serves well, as water requirements for plants are usually moderate during this time.
When setting a tarp in your garden, the first step is to set the tarp on the ground and ensure it is tied with a wire.
Lay a stone on top of the wires to prevent them from getting carried away by the wind. The tarp’s transparency serves to allow light inside. The natural moisture is also preserved.
Transparent tarps work best in winter than during summer. The hot weather during summer will destroy grass seeds inside the tarp.
If your garden is located in a windy zone, mulch may not be the best choice for you. Wind easily blows it away.
Luckily, we have the burlap sheets that will put your worries to rest. It works best in covering your grass seeds until germination.
Burlap sheets are not a deterrent to the optimum growing conditions of your seeds. It allows both moisture, heat, and sunlight to go through it, reaching the soil surface.
More importantly, it covers your soil from the pecking birds. It will help if you anchor the burlap sheets’ edges with u-shaped pins to maintain the cover in a particular place.
Ensure that the sheets are removed after germination has taken place.
2. Use Fake Predators
Fake predators have the same effect as the real ones. Have them around your garden, and your bird problem will be a thing of the past.
Birds get scared easily with scarecrows in the shape of owls, rubber snakes, and hawks. This obviously triggers their natural threat perception, and they won’t dare step into your garden.
Rubber snakes do scare good when you place them in soil. For the owl or hawk decoy, put them on the fence or top of the post, and you can say bye to the trespassing birds.
Scarecrows are affordable and require no maintenance. You can keep scarecrows around as long as you need; however, they aren’t durable, and you may need to replace them periodically until your grass seeds are out of danger.
An additional tip when using scarecrows such as an owl is to change their position occasionally. Keeping them in one place for long will make the birds suspicious, and they will figure out the trick.
3. Use a Reflective Deterrent
There is quite a tonne of reflective deterrents you could go for when you intend to scare hungry birds away. Some include CDs, DVDs, and reflective tapes.
The reflective tapes make the birds somewhat uncomfortable by directing lights into their eyes, scaring them away. Keep these tapes hanging around your lawn to scare the birds.
You can also stick them on walls or poles. Reflective tapes work best in sunlight, making them effective since this is the birds’ peak feeding time.
4. Keep Grass Seeds Buried in the Ground
Another cost-free way of keeping birds from consuming your grass seeds is bury them inside soil during planting.
Birds love to look for food particles on the ground. Raking topsoil on your grass seeds will cover them, preventing the birds from hanging around and consuming them.
To prevent the soil from being lost through wind, exposing your seeds, water the lawn after seeding to keep the soil and the seeds stuck together.
Birds find it easier pushing loose soil than the sticky one.
5. Use a Net Repellent
Seed netting is also handy in keeping the birds away from your grass seeds. After covering them in soil, enclose the seeds with a dedicated bird net.
The bird net should be made of materials that are weather-resistant and durable.
With the net in place, birds will find it difficult to lay their feet on your lawn. Installing the net in your garden is a simple process that involves staking the four corners of your garden.
Once you have the stakes in place, hook the net and stretch it out to keep it above the lawn. When your grass seeds pick up, you can remove the net protector.
A net repellent is pretty helpful in areas affected by fast-blowing winds or where birds peck through the mulch.
6. Create Some Noise in your Garden
Birds love to feed in a quiet and peaceful environment. Any form of noise in your garden will be a turn-off for them.
There are many noise devices you want to use to scare the birds away. Some to mention include pinwheels, wind chimes, aluminum tin pans.
Noise from any of these tools will scare the birds as they are affected by almost all kinds of sound.
There are also commercial noise repellents you could purchase and use to achieve the same effect. These devices typically use ultrasonic sounds, which are inaudible for humans, to scare birds away.
7. Plant Some More Seeds
Putting in the extra effort to protect your grass seeds is good but let’s face it, you are not going to save all your grass seeds.
The mannerless birds will consume your grains no matter your efforts. Also, you will lose some of the seeds through rotting or strong winds blowing them away.
To cover for such losses, you want to grow some extra 30% seeds in your lawn. This prevents patches of grass from forming across your lawn.
8. Place a Bird Feeder in Your Lawn
Do you have a bird feeder for the birds on your lawn? Why not use it to distract the birds from eating your grass seeds.
It takes some effort for the birds to get to the grass seed in your lawn; therefore, luring them with a bird feeder could save you some losses.
However, this idea can backfire as it will invariably attract more birds to your lawn. The trick is to keep the bird feeder as far as possible from your lawn area where you have sown the grass seeds.
9. Take Advantage of Home Pets
If you have pets like cats and dogs around, you could give them the assignment of chasing the birds away for you. Their presence alone in your lawn is enough to scare the birds away. Besides, your pets will also willingly do the job for the fun of it.
Birds are an important part of the natural environment and the ecosystem, without any doubt. However, their presence is often undesired at times. Using the tactics mentioned above, you can prevent your grass seeds from being eaten by birds before germination.