I emailed this originally by mistake , having now found my way around the site I decided to post it here also :0)
I was hoping you could give me some advice about keeping magpies off of my allotment? I didn't have a problem last year so have just got strips of polythene tied to a stick for bird scarers - they have worked well until this years babies left the nest. They have pulled off 12 of my 16 sweetcorn, 4 of 8 pakchoi, pulled up 3 swiss chard, 2 runner bean plants and even nipped the green stalks from 5 of my onions! I have had rattling bottles on a cane for the past four days and thought that was working until I found more broken off onion stalks this afternoon. Do you have any words of wisdom please?
Charles replied -
This sounds bad and I can only suggest fleece over all new plantings, to help plants reach a large enough size that birds cannot pull them out - so keep covered for up to a month. Covering beds with fleece for a month has saved my plants so often! even onions and without any hoops or supports. Runner beans can be covered about ten days, then putting canes in may discourage the birds....?