Heron Control

OldSnowy

LE
Moderator
Book Reviewer
#1
I've recently been getting a lot of trouble with a Heron (I presume it's the same one, they all look pretty similar to me) coming down into the garden and killing my innocent goldfish. I've got netting over the pond, but the bugger has learned fast, and has recently either landed on it, so that it gets pushed into the water and he can go on fishing (although he can't eat them through the net - he just kills them anyway) or pushes it out of the way and gets his neck into the edge of the water, and kills things that way.

Now to be plain, I realise that this is the Shooting forum, and that it is strictly illegal to shoot Herons in the UK, but I'm at my wit's end, and thought people here would have some sensible advice. Decoys are crap, a water-spray thing just gave him a cooling rinse, and now he's managed to get though the netting. If I was a nastier chap, I'd use my good old .22" BSA air rifle on him, but as I say that's illegal (and I may not kill him first shot, which could prove dangerous - to us both...). Oh, and the RSPB website recommends my abandoning the fish, and embracing the wonders of seeing a Heron in my garden. Great idea, but once he's eaten all my fish, frogs, etc., I'll never see him again.

Any suggestions? Failing that, anyone got any decent Heron recipes?
 

Alsacien

MIA
Moderator
#2
OldSnowy said:
I've recently been getting a lot of trouble with a Heron (I presume it's the same one, they all look pretty similar to me) coming down into the garden and killing my innocent goldfish. I've got netting over the pond, but the bugger has learned fast, and has recently either landed on it, so that it gets pushed into the water and he can go on fishing (although he can't eat them through the net - he just kills them anyway) or pushes it out of the way and gets his neck into the edge of the water, and kills things that way.

Now to be plain, I realise that this is the Shooting forum, and that it is strictly illegal to shoot Herons in the UK, but I'm at my wit's end, and thought people here would have some sensible advice. Decoys are crap, a water-spray thing just gave him a cooling rinse, and now he's managed to get though the netting. If I was a nastier chap, I'd use my good old .22" BSA air rifle on him, but as I say that's illegal (and I may not kill him first shot, which could prove dangerous - to us both...). Oh, and the RSPB website recommends my abandoning the fish, and embracing the wonders of seeing a Heron in my garden. Great idea, but once he's eaten all my fish, frogs, etc., I'll never see him again.

Any suggestions? Failing that, anyone got any decent Heron recipes?
A fullsize Heron decoy works fine for my neighbour in France - used to lose a lot of fish now no problem.
 
#3
OldSnowy said:
I've recently been getting a lot of trouble with a Heron (I presume it's the same one, they all look pretty similar to me) coming down into the garden and killing my innocent goldfish. I've got netting over the pond, but the bugger has learned fast, and has recently either landed on it, so that it gets pushed into the water and he can go on fishing (although he can't eat them through the net - he just kills them anyway) or pushes it out of the way and gets his neck into the edge of the water, and kills things that way.

Now to be plain, I realise that this is the Shooting forum, and that it is strictly illegal to shoot Herons in the UK, but I'm at my wit's end, and thought people here would have some sensible advice. Decoys are crap, a water-spray thing just gave him a cooling rinse, and now he's managed to get though the netting. If I was a nastier chap, I'd use my good old .22" BSA air rifle on him, but as I say that's illegal (and I may not kill him first shot, which could prove dangerous - to us both...). Oh, and the RSPB website recommends my abandoning the fish, and embracing the wonders of seeing a Heron in my garden. Great idea, but once he's eaten all my fish, frogs, etc., I'll never see him again.

Any suggestions? Failing that, anyone got any decent Heron recipes?
Killing/Eating Herons has only been illegal since 1981.Skin the bugger and casserole at 180oC for 3 hours.The meat is dark,tough and fishy(no sh1t,sherlock) but not as dark,tough and fishy as a cormorant.
 
#4
There are two things to try that are worthwhile
1 - You can get a fitting that goes on a hose and has PIR on it. Heron lands and gets a good blast of water.
Does it work? Yes but it is very heavy on battery power so make sure that you gets the mains adapter
2 - a low level electric fence unit that is made especially for this purpose. Does it work? Yes and you can sometimes have the added bonus of bagging a cat :)
3 - Plaky heron
Does it work? I can't maker up my mind on this as I have had one these b*****ds for a long time and the flying b*****ds still come in to feed and don't seem that put off by it
 
#5
I would use a rigid net that can't drop into the water, one of my neighbours had similar problems a few years ago and the normal net just sagged into the water so he used a rigid wire mesh to keep the bastards at bay!
I'm also aware that cormorants are becoming a problem especially on some lakes & fish farms. These again are protected and are increasingly moving further inland to get a good meal causing severe problems in some areas!
Of course the dogooders say they are part of nature but in ever increasing numbers they can devastate a lake, river or fish farm!
 
#6
I believe that there are circumstances where lethal force may be used against Cormorants but I can't remember twhat they are.
 

ugly

LE
Moderator
#7
PjAD, when all else fails, PE4 and 650 steel balls.
 
#8
I can lend you my Pointer? he has been known to leap 8ft to pull a phesant out of the sky..... cant gaurantee the retrieve though he can be a little head strong.....
 
#9
galgenberg said:
OldSnowy said:
I've recently been getting a lot of trouble with a Heron (I presume it's the same one, they all look pretty similar to me) coming down into the garden and killing my innocent goldfish. I've got netting over the pond, but the bugger has learned fast, and has recently either landed on it, so that it gets pushed into the water and he can go on fishing (although he can't eat them through the net - he just kills them anyway) or pushes it out of the way and gets his neck into the edge of the water, and kills things that way.

Now to be plain, I realise that this is the Shooting forum, and that it is strictly illegal to shoot Herons in the UK, but I'm at my wit's end, and thought people here would have some sensible advice. Decoys are crap, a water-spray thing just gave him a cooling rinse, and now he's managed to get though the netting. If I was a nastier chap, I'd use my good old .22" BSA air rifle on him, but as I say that's illegal (and I may not kill him first shot, which could prove dangerous - to us both...). Oh, and the RSPB website recommends my abandoning the fish, and embracing the wonders of seeing a Heron in my garden. Great idea, but once he's eaten all my fish, frogs, etc., I'll never see him again.

Any suggestions? Failing that, anyone got any decent Heron recipes?
Killing/Eating Herons has only been illegal since 1981.Skin the bugger and casserole at 180oC for 3 hours.The meat is dark,tough and fishy(no sh1t,sherlock) but not as dark,tough and fishy as a cormorant.
Seconded. Meat is good but cook slowly. Cormorant is very good too, make a soup with barley and said bird with a few onions and carrots. Both are still eaten up here. 8O
 
#11
I'd just shoot it. Who will know? Or put a dead goldfish with a large hook through it attached to 1m of line in the pond so when the heron swallows the fish it will get stuck. Then run out of the house and beat it to death with a cricket bat.
 
#12
Build a pergoda over the pond or raise the pond as they aint too good at balancing on a wall , a good bird scarer is a round wood disk about the size of a dustbin lid painted yellow with a black pupil , nail that to your fence over looking your pond. Apparently it looks too much like a big eye of a predator & they spot it while swooping down into your garden & abort at the last minute.

LT.
 
#13
From the RSPB website -

Grey heron deterrents

Instead of keeping goldfish, why not convert a pond into a wildlife pond with native plants and animals in areas where herons are causing persistent problems.

* Netting the pond, or providing the fish with cover to hide underneath are perhaps best options.
* Steep-sided deep ponds are less prone to herons than shallow ones that allow easy fishing, although this makes the pond unsuitable as a bathing and drinking site for all birds.
* A fence-like barrier with taut wires or strings 20 and 35 cm above the water surface erected at the edge of the water can prevent a heron from reaching the fish.
* Scarers based on a trip-wire system that the heron activates are commercially available.
* Audio scaring may be possible. Alarm call of a heron is unlikely to be work on its own, and so a special tape is available that combines the alarm call with the sound of gunshot.
* Human presence is as good deterrent as any. If birds associate people with danger, a human-shaped scarer may work well. It is worth reinforcing the behaviour from time to time with a real person in similar clothing walking about.
* A plastic heron will more likely attract other herons rather than deter them.
Unbelievable. I hate the RSPB. Woodpeckers, herons, crows, magpies, sparrowhawks all need shooting. But not as much as cats.
 

ugly

LE
Moderator
#14
Herons dont like people, so stag on!
 
#15
asr1 said:
From the RSPB website -

Grey heron deterrents

Instead of keeping goldfish, why not convert a pond into a wildlife pond with native plants and animals in areas where herons are causing persistent problems.

* Netting the pond, or providing the fish with cover to hide underneath are perhaps best options.
* Steep-sided deep ponds are less prone to herons than shallow ones that allow easy fishing, although this makes the pond unsuitable as a bathing and drinking site for all birds.
* A fence-like barrier with taut wires or strings 20 and 35 cm above the water surface erected at the edge of the water can prevent a heron from reaching the fish.
* Scarers based on a trip-wire system that the heron activates are commercially available.
* Audio scaring may be possible. Alarm call of a heron is unlikely to be work on its own, and so a special tape is available that combines the alarm call with the sound of gunshot.
* Human presence is as good deterrent as any. If birds associate people with danger, a human-shaped scarer may work well. It is worth reinforcing the behaviour from time to time with a real person in similar clothing walking about.
* A plastic heron will more likely attract other herons rather than deter them.
Unbelievable. I hate the RSPB. Woodpeckers, herons, crows, magpies, sparrowhawks all need shooting. But not as much as cats.
'Woodpeckers' ??? you cant shoot them there would be no cider......
 

Biped

LE
Book Reviewer
#16
Plastic Herons - I sell them for £35.00. High enough detail to give male Herons too much of a lob-on to even think about eating!
 

OldSnowy

LE
Moderator
Book Reviewer
#17
Biped said:
Plastic Herons - I sell them for £35.00. High enough detail to give male Herons too much of a lob-on to even think about eating!
I've tried one, and my experience is - as the cursed RSPB say - that they tend to attract 'em more than scare 'em.

I fear that, in my suburban/edge of green belt area, that the birds in question have, like foxes, got so used to the 'normal' deterrents that they are all now pretty useless. Lures, water jets, nets, all have been successfully (for the heron) avoided.

I may put up a sign threatening lethal force. If he doesn't read it, it's his lookout. I particularly like the goldfish/hook/cricket bat scenario, as my old ClickyBa could do with an outing. Mind you, that would result in a flailing heron in the garden, and could be messy. Failing that, it might be down to the equally lethal - but more spectacular - method as used to amuse generations of bored soldiery on Lydd and Hythe - bait wrapped around a good few Calcium carbide pellets. It works on seagulls a treat. Allegedly......

I wonder if Biped sells Carbide Lamps in his shop, purely for sight blacking, you understand?
 
#18
I fully recommend a rigid mesh over the pond. We had trouble with a couple of heron's who were brazingly nicking goldfish in broad daylight, we tried all sorts of things:- Full-size Heron models, mesh (not rigid) and wire round the perimeter of the pond, which the bastards stepped over.

I was thinking about using my air-rifle against the buggers but thought I'd try the rigid meshing as a last-ditch attempt.

Ha ha! Spent a good deal of time watching from the house as the Heron's stared longigly at the pool but couldn't figure out any weaknesses.
 
#19
I tried for weeks on the Uganda and Kerrin when docked in Falklands sound to prove the carbide / alcaseltzer in a seagull bomb. No joy at all.

Best was as stated a fishing hook in a piece of bread with a line attached to one of the port hole locking wingnut things.

The fly pretty fast till the brass thing pulls them to their doom.
 

Biped

LE
Book Reviewer
#20
OldSnowy said:
Biped said:
Plastic Herons - I sell them for £35.00. High enough detail to give male Herons too much of a lob-on to even think about eating!
I've tried one, and my experience is - as the cursed RSPB say - that they tend to attract 'em more than scare 'em.

I fear that, in my suburban/edge of green belt area, that the birds in question have, like foxes, got so used to the 'normal' deterrents that they are all now pretty useless. Lures, water jets, nets, all have been successfully (for the heron) avoided.

I may put up a sign threatening lethal force. If he doesn't read it, it's his lookout. I particularly like the goldfish/hook/cricket bat scenario, as my old ClickyBa could do with an outing. Mind you, that would result in a flailing heron in the garden, and could be messy. Failing that, it might be down to the equally lethal - but more spectacular - method as used to amuse generations of bored soldiery on Lydd and Hythe - bait wrapped around a good few Calcium carbide pellets. It works on seagulls a treat. Allegedly......

I wonder if Biped sells Carbide Lamps in his shop, purely for sight blacking, you understand?
Alas, alack no I don't, more's the pity.

I have it on good authority that if one was to wait by the edge of a suitably shallow pond, wearing a Ghillie Suit (£100), and holding a Brazilian High-carbon steel 18" machette (£12.95), one could, after a short but violent struggle, bring the bird to heel. If one is quick, and has a suitable short knife (£9.95), a dry-dack (£7.95) and a folding shovel (£12.95) to hand, one could very quickly return the scene of violence to one of tranquility that is most harmonious with nature, as well as having some interestingly-flavoured breast meat with ones tea. Of course, the look on the faces of your neighbours as what they thought was a new bush sets about said Heron would be priceless.
 

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