I just got this info forwarded to me from a non-parrot-shooting
vineyard-owning friend in Australia. It shows that there are alternatives to
the slaughter and very viable ones at that:
Rather than shooting parrots which is both morally offensive and of dubious
effectiveness, one Australian grower has invested in netting his vines,
resulting in a net annual gain of $1,275 per acre
He is reaping as he has sown, is making a handsome profit and has provided
us with a detailed analysis of his figures.
Bruce's nets cost him about $2,250 per acre and are expected to have a
lifespan of ten years.
This means the cost per annum is $225 per acre but Bruce estimates bird
losses in 1998 were 50% i.e. $1,500 per acre. He grows Young Pinot Noir
vines which yield about 1.5 tonnes per acre and sell at $2,000 per tonne.
The nets are proving to be very effective so it can be assumed that losses
due to birds are now insignificant.
Bruce is therefore enjoying a gain of $1,275 ($1,500 minus $225) every year.
What's more, these figures do not include increasing yield as the vines
mature. Bruce's vineyard is now yielding 2.5 to 3 tonnes per acre.
Assuming only a static yield of 1.5 tonnes per acre and a constant 'bird
loss' of 50%, the cumulative benefits over the 10 years life of the netting
is per acre:
Year 01: Loss $750
Year 02: Gain $750
Year 03: Gain $2,250
Year 04: Gain $3,750
Year 05: Gain $5,250
Year 06: Gain $6,750
Year 07: Gain $8,250
Year 08: Gain $9,750
Year 09: Gain $11,250
Year 10: Gain $12,750
The question then is: why aren't more growers reaching for the Yellow Pages
to look for netting installers instead of their guns ?
Could it be, they can't do sums or do they just like killing ?
>What it all amounts to is the needless killing of beautiful creatures just
>to swell the waters of a lake of surplus wine nobody wants to drink.
>The one good thing is that there are plenty of environmentally conscious
>Australians and this thing was started by an Australian newspaper. We
>be supporting them any way we can.