I have a fruit cage in which I grow one each of the following dwarf fruit trees i.e. braeburn apple, bramley apple, conference pear, cherry & plum trees. Also in tubs I have strawberry plants and a gooseberry bush. There are also raspberry canes growing in the soil. I was thinking of opening the door to let birds in to pick through the bark on the floor,etc over the winter. My question is, am I risking the birds picking off future buds for next season\'s crops?
Fruit Cage Query
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
I am not sure if this is a risk. I have heard of birds eating fruit tree buds and especially flowers, but I think this happens more in the early spring when the buds are beginning to grow and probably get more tender. Some birds may also destroy buds while looking for insects, but it sounds like this is more common once it gets warmer. So I think opening the cages would be safe in the winter as long as you shut the birds out before it gets warm again, but keep an eye on the birds' behavior just in case.