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Ponds and herons

Hello. I'm trying to find the best method of protecting my fish from herons. I've tried netting the pond but have found a frog trapped in the netting on 2 occasions so would prefer not to net the pond in future. Has anyone found a successful method of protecting fish without endangering wildlife?


  • plant pauperplant pauper Posts: 6,234
    Catapult! I have yet to hit anything, including the heron, but it gives it enough of a start to make it fly off. Lanky big git!
  • Elaine174Elaine174 Posts: 28
    Great idea but what to do when I'm not there. The pesky things always arrive when my backs [email protected]
  • Kia-MenaKia-Mena Posts: 16
    We have cotton thread strung across the pond in a random fashion and that seems to have worked so far ...
  • pansyfacepansyface PEAK DISTRICT DerbyshirePosts: 21,185
    edited May 2018
    Our heron was sitting on the ridge of the roof this morning, looking down at us, watching both ponds. They don’t take no for an answer.

    The best system that we have found is a floating plastic mesh which you can tie together to fit the perimeter of any pond. It doesn’t look fantastic but we have CCTV footage of the heron arriving at 5.30 the other morning, standing on the stones around the edge of the pond and trying to get the fish to panic. One fish moved into open water, the heron stepped onto the floating mesh, began to sink, panicked itself and stepped back onto the stone surround. At that moment, the cavalry arrived in the form of our fearless moggie who charged at the heron, almost caught it and sent it packing.

    Of course, the heron was back the next day.

    So far, no fish have been lost using this mesh method. We have had it for two years now.

    We also have frogs and toads in the pond and they bred successfully and have now moved out. The heron only caught one frog, which had decided to move beyond the confines of the floating mesh.

    Apophthegm -  a big word for a small thought.
  • plant pauperplant pauper Posts: 6,234
    Awwww just sitting there asking to missed by my catapult PF. I could miss him by several feet if I was there!!! 
  • pansyfacepansyface PEAK DISTRICT DerbyshirePosts: 21,185
    I was only let loose with a catapult once. PP and I managed to hit myself.
    Apophthegm -  a big word for a small thought.
  • Pete.8Pete.8 Billericay, EssexPosts: 9,854
    I used a battery powered heron water scarer years ago. It's connected to your hose and when it senses movement it squirts out a jet of water in quite an impressive arc and worked very well. Also great fun surprising visitors walking up the garden :)
    When I made the 12x8 pond 20+yrs ago I planted juniperus squamata around the front, this is a prickly conifer and the herons wont walk on it. There are benches at both ends of the pond, so they can't get in there, and the back of the pond is a wide slate (ivy covered) waterfall and a big clump of Japanese anemones, so now there's no where that the heron can get close enough to the pond anymore. :) at last I seem to have won!

    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • plant pauperplant pauper Posts: 6,234
    HeHe sounds like me with a bow and arrow, stick, ball, stones.... Wren pretends she doesn't know me.  :/ I nearly broke my own window with a stone. I was standing with my back to it at the time.
  • Elaine174Elaine174 Posts: 28
    edited May 2018
    Great replies guys, thanks. I can't even hit a ball with a bat so I think I would be a danger to the public with a catapult! I will check out the mesh squares though, so thanks for the link pansyface😊

  • wild edgeswild edges The north west of south east WalesPosts: 8,847
    I was so pleased when a heron visited my wildlife pond. o:)
    Tradition is just peer pressure from dead people
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