Tips for deterring fruit bats from mango tree?

Hey Ozbargainers, this year we've seen the highest yield ever from our mango tree yet, but Mum's been picking most of the mangoes very early (when they're still 70%+ green) because as soon as they ripen any more than that, the bats get to them. They'll ripen a little more once plucked from the tree, but nothing would be better than seeing the mangoes turn a nice yellow/orange/red colour all over before eating them. If anyone has any tips for deterring the bats (and simultaneously thieves who come and steal some mangoes) that would be great!

*Parents were silly and decided to plant the mango tree at the front of our house, where it's not fenced in and is just wide open, so we've had quite a few mangoes stolen from the tree this year!


  • +4

    Bikies + Velcro :)

  • +3

    Some sort of mesh/netting draped over the tree?

    As for thieves, assuming they come under the cover of darkness, how about a motion sensor light?

    • +1

      We considered getting some sort of net for the tree in the past, but it's now so big that we cannot reach the top of the tree, even with the ladder we have at home.
      And surprisingly the thieves seem to come during the day, when everyone is usually out/at work. :(

      • +2

        Put the corners of the net on long poles to put it over the tree then bring it down and remove the poles.

        Passers by will be less likely to cut a net and grab a mango if you can get it covered well.

        • Oh that's a pretty good idea, I'll pitch it to the parents and see what they think :) Thanks!

  • -1

    glue traps or net traps may work.

    • +1

      We don't like bats, but we don't want to kill them either ><

      • -3

        they're pests. protect by law, but still pests.

    • hahahah If only I was actually able to catch both bats and people in the act XD Because this sounds like a terrific option.

  • +2

    A laser pointer, bats really hate being pointed at and think they're getting attacked by The Red Dot.
    Do it enough times, and eventually they'll avoid the tree in front of your house.

  • +2

    I’d suggest a bit of technology. A set up of a 12v motion sensor hooked up to a 12v water solenoid and a sprinkler. The bats tend to circle the tree before landing this sets off the sensor that turns on the sprinkler. Only have it run for 30 src or so.
    It may also deter people…

    • +2

      This is a great idea ,
      then you could dig a moat to catch the excess water and fill it with sharks with friggin lasers on their heads.
      It may also deter seals…

    • I love this idea!

  • +2

    With our tree, we got some brown paper bag lunch bags from woolies and individually wrapped each mango. Worked out great and was cheap! This works great for fruit flies and bats but can’t help you with thieves sorry.

  • High pressure hose … only enough to annoy the bats … may help deter them. Maybe a few rubber snakes and pythons would scare a few away too. My mother has fake owls to deter the lorikeets, but still expects to lose a few. It can be a bit noisy if they are trying to settle there before evening take off too. Not sure how you would deter people from stealing your mangoes though. Perhaps you could put a sign up asking for someone to pick them for you for a trade of a few mangoes. That way you are actually saying you really want them, but not prepared to give them away for free. People (or children) may just wrongly assume you don't want all those mangoes. They can make a mess if they are falling on cars or driveways. Perhaps you could have the tree lopped back unless you have someone prepared to climb up there. Sharing the crop with your neighbours may have them keeping a watchful eye on them too. At least as your tree is in a frontal position you won't (or shouldn't) have anyone sneaking into the rear of your property when you are out. An annoying goat (even a scary cat, chicken or sheep) may deter a few people also.

    I wouldn't try netting as it is no fun trying to remove a caught animal or bird (which may have a disease too), and may even cause serious injury to them.

  • You are screwed- no stopping them short of a physical barrier.

    All commercial growers pick the mangoes green, so if that keeps the bats and the rats off them, that's your solution.

  • Maybe try some Christmas lights/laser disco ball ect

    As far as the human factor goes put up a biohazard sign warning of the Hendra virus ; with a list of symptoms like - hairloss , uncontrollable flatulance , the bends , shooting diarriha , bleeding gums , screaming sleeper syndrome ect…

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