Date of this Version
Niner, M., G.M. Linz, H.J. Homan, and M. Clark. 2013. Open field test with Avipel Bird Repellent: Year I. Paper presented at the 35th National Sunflower Association Sunflower Research Workshop, Fargo, North Dakota`.
Since the mid-1900s, blackbird depredation has become an expensive problem for farmers in the Great Plains region of the United States and Canada (Blackwell et al. 2003). Damage to crops from blackbirds costs the growers of sunflower millions annually (Peer et al. 2003). The problem stems from two concurrent events: ripening of sunflowers and fledging of millions of resident blackbirds that must quickly prepare for migration to southern wintering grounds. Multiple methods of protecting crops exist, but none have proved to be cost-effective. For this reason and the safety of the non-target species, a chemical-based repellent might be a good option (Avery and Cummings, 2003).