yellow bellied sapsuckers damaged many pine trees here

Discussion in 'Gardening & Plant Propagation' started by Janette, May 19, 2006.

  1. Janette

    Janette Well-Known Member

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    Has anyone dealt with this problem before? How did you combat it? They've sure made a mess. I hope the trees will live.
     
  2. Ravenlost

    Ravenlost Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I found this...

    ...Inflatable owls or snakes may also be effective, as will lengths of garden hose that resemble snakes. For the owls and snakes to be effective, they must be moved almost daily. It is thought that the same bird attacks the same tree each year... Thus, a bird watching a tree notices that the owls or snakes haven’t moved for several days and concludes they must be dead. The association of individual birds and specific trees also explains why only certain trees are attacked while nearby trees of the same species are unharmed. Remember that yellow-bellied sapsuckers are protected by state and federal laws as well as international treaty, making it illegal to harm or kill the birds.

    http://hyg.aces.uiuc.edu/secure/subscribers/199919c.html

    And this...

    Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers will drill a series of small holes around a tree trunk. When they return a few hours later, the holes have filled with sap. They suck the sap from these holes - hence their name. These holes should not damage the tree.
    Larger woodpeckers that tear bark off a tree are searching for insects. They may be doing you a favor by eating insects that might eventually kill your tree. Most trees should be able to co-exist with woodpeckers. For young trees, try tying silver ribbons or balloons made of Mylar from the limbs to scare away the birds.


    http://www.wildbirds.com/pests_FAQ.htm
     

  3. Janette

    Janette Well-Known Member

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    Thanks, Ravenlost... :) I'll check those links. The birds have made a horrible mess of the pine trees and I sure hope they will recover.
     
  4. MaineFarmMom

    MaineFarmMom Columnist, Feature Writer

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    The trees should be fine. My ancient crab apple tree is covered with neat rows of holes. It's easily 100 years old. Trees have the ability to heal themselves. Think of all the branches we prune off and holes drilled for maple sap, lightening strikes and such.