Using The Jackite Osprey, Falcon and Bald Eagle As a Scarecrow
I thought you might like to see a picture of how the eagle works out in front of my house. With thousands of Canada geese being pressed southward by the northern snows, our lake is covered with geese, however not a single one is in our yard, even when the eagle is resting.
My wife and I live on the edge of a golf course, by a grove of scrub oak
that houses an aggressive and growing clan of magpies. In addition to the usual annoyances---loud squawking, eating your dog's or cat's food, and pooping on your balcony---last year the magpies developed a taste for my tomatoes. As soon as a tomato ripened, they would usually beat me to it, pecking out what they wanted and leaving the rest inedible. The whole flock could be seen every day, strolling through the yard like they owned it, eating whatever they could find. They even ate rose buds and pecked into a couple of my peppers and squashes.
I thought you might enjoy this image of your doves flying around our church steeple. I recently ordered six doves, and after a false start when osprey kites were mistakenly sent, we got them put together in time for Pentecost, the Christian celebration of the birth of the church and the arrival of the Holy Spirit to empower the disciples. We had doves gently hanging/flying over our altar and also flew doves around the sanctuary over the heads of the congregation while the scripture was read. After worship we took the kites outside and children were given a chance to fly them outdoors, which they loved. They were beautiful, and yes, they really do look like real birds in the air.
Ruth Ann Ramstad
Woodbury/Peaceful Grove United Methodist Church
We were cruising down the Atlantic ICW this past fall. In SC north of Charleston, we passed a series of long docks out over the marsh which were all covered with various sea birds, Gulls, Cormorants, Pelicans etc.; all that is, save one which was flying one of your Bald Eagle kites.
That was duly noted and we purchased one of your kites from a store in Charleston. We've seen many owl statues with Sea Gulls sitting on their heads, but nobody messes with the eagle. It held off several hundred angry Gulls south of Daytona Beach; they all fuss at it, but do not come near. Amazing thing! Thank you for your help in keeping our boat clean. -Jack Allen
The magpies are not only hungry, bold and smart---they're legally protected. So you can't shoot, trap or poison the little rascals. Seeking a legal and humane solution, I consulted our local Bird Man, Mr. Larry Kienki,
at Feed the Birds and More. He suggested that I try a Jackite Peregrine Falcon Kite. He sold me the kite, a telescoping fiberglass pole, and the line and minimal hardware needed to attach the line to the pole. I also had to buy a piece of rebar at the local home-improvement store. The kite itself required a bit of assembly, but within a half hour the rebar was pounded upright into the center of the garden, the pole was inserted onto the rebar, and the kite was attached and launched.
With any reasonable wind, the falcon kite lifts into menacing flight, and with a stronger wind the wings actually flap. (If the wind gets up to 50 mph, the kite should be taken down).
Did it work? Like a charm. Since the first flight of the falcon kite, we haven't seen a single magpie in our back yard. Our tomatoes, squashes, peppers, roses, etc. are saved. As smart as magpies may be, they are apparently scared spit-less by a fake Peregrine Falcon. Thanks to Larry for the advice and the gear.