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Controlling Blackbird Damage to Sunflower and Grain Crops in the Northern Great Plains


Although red-winged blackbirds, yellow-headed blackbirds, and common grackles significantly damage agricultural crops in the northern Great Plains, superficial surveys of fields sometimes overestimate damage and lead to unnecessary expenditures on blackbird control. If significant damage is likely to occur in a field, an integrated pest management approach is most effective in protecting crops from blackbirds. To reduce crop losses, individual growers will need to assess their particular situation and employ one or more of the techniques discussed in this bulletin. Finally, in implementing a damage control program, it is important to exercise caution and follow procedures on the label instructions before using pesticides or frightening devices.
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