Wildlife friendly netting
Native animals, increasingly displaced from their natural habitat by tree clearing and extreme weather, are resorting to flowering and fruiting trees in our gardens. Birds, bats, lizards, snakes and the occasional possum are the main victims of inappropriate netting. Animals become tangled in large mesh netting and cannot free themselves. While struggling to escape, the net cuts ever deeper into the animal.
We recommend a densely woven net that will not trap wildlife and doesn’t need a frame, such as the Fruit Saver nets, Hail Guard or Vege Net. These nets are all white – the colour best seen by animals at night.
Wildlife friendly netting should have a mesh size of less than 5 mm.
Use a supporting frame to protect the tree from the weight of the net, and prevent birds pecking fruit through the net.
Remove nets promptly after fruiting to prevent damage to new growth.
Some hardware stores in Australia have taken the lead and stopped selling netting that is potentially harmful to wildlife. Ask your local supplier to stock only fruit tree netting that passes the ‘finger test’ – netting that you cannot poke your finger through.
Old netting is often seen as discarded piles about yards or sheds when no longer needed, or loosely draped over fruit trees or veggie gardens to protect plants. Many creatures get tangled up in the netting, suffering constriction, dehydration and starvation. We ask everyone to be diligent about the responsible removal of unused or unnecessary netting from around their property, and please urge others to do likewise.