Little feathered swine. Since our cat passed on around 2008 we have a lot more birds in the yard & we love that. We enjoy watching them & we feed them all year. I tell them "howdy" when I come out in the mornings & they don't even seem frightened. Why then, must the blackbirds ravage my new planted seeds & sprouts? Okay - because that's their nature, of course, & it looks like a lot more fun to freak out birdbrain style & toss the dirt all around than to politely peck at what's in the feeding bottle or on the ground. Talk about down & dirty - they almost burrow into the boxes & patches, even pull up my baby spinach. Spinach! Blackbirds! I never knew they had those appetites.
The long & short of it is, the seedlings need shelter. I always shop second hand, so off I went. Had to go 3 places before I found a great big lace curtain for 30 Dkr. or about $5. I am sure that's a lot cheaper than anything they would sell off a roll in a garden center or hardware store. I cut off big strips & covered 2 beds plus 2 flowerboxes. There is still plenty left. It looks appealingly tacky - big lace flowers among the real flowers - & it does the job.
So there it is again. SHOP SECOND HAND & do our earth a favor. It saves money & I suspect I am the only gardener on my street with a lace curtain doing bird duty. Silly - absolutely - but it IS kind of fun to be the one with the good ideas, not? Especially at this age. Creativity counts, besides which, I have never grown my own spinach before. No blackbird is going to spoil that!