July is such a lovely month at SSA. Wander around, and you’ll find peaches, plums, apples, grapes, figs, and tomatoes, all becoming ripe.
Trouble is, every bird in the village knows this too. So word gets out, and bird friends invite bird friends – and bird kids and bird cousins and bird neighbors – to all come feast on the bounty. This means that I get lots of birds eating my fruit.
Do I mind? Not at all. I chalk it off to farming overhead and as an offering of gratitude to the birds for the joy they bring here daily. But this doesn’t mean I don’t want some beautiful fruit left for myself.
What is the solution? As with many things, it is a compromise. You see, the birds have all day to investigate the fruit for perfect ripeness. They will often start a test hole on a favorite candidate, and then revisit it for many days as it progressively ripens. They will also drink the nectar that oozes from the juicer fruits, kind of like opening up a little Nature’s Jamba Juice.
So when I am out there getting fruit for myself, I find the one the birds have already gotten, and LEAVE IT ALONE. I take the rest for me. I have found that if you pick the birds’ fruit in order to discourage them, you compel them to find another on which to start a test hole. And because they probably have more time than you to watch for the best fruit, they will beat you to new fruit every time. This leads to many holes in many fruits, and it will feel like they are eating all of your crop.
Don’t pick their fruit. Leave it for them. They will happily revisit the fruit they have started for many days, and leave the others unmolested for you. I practice this on every fruit tree I have (and there are over 40). I find that the birds are happy to oblige by leaving fruit for me if I leave fruit for them as well.
See? In a nutshell, by giving, you receive. Isn’t Nature (and the birds) awesome teachers?