|how do I prevent mockingbirds from devouring my tomatoes?|
One way to keep birds from damaging tomato fruit is to cover the plants with netting. Another option used by some gardeners is to hang Christmas tree ornaments painted "tomato red" in the bushes before the real fruit get ripe. The birds supposedly peck them and get the idea that those red things are not worth messing with. Then when the real fruit ripens they don't bother it. Try it next time and see if it works for you.
If all fails you can harvest fruit when it is just starting to turn pink, before the birds take an interest in it. It will continue to ripen after you bring it indoors. Just leave it on a counter or some other spot at room temperature. Do not put it in the refrigerator.
Thanks for the question. Please stop in again soon!