Keep the birds in your backyard happy and healthy with these bird feeding tips and tricks.
More Is Better
Crowded spaces can quickly lead to messy surroundings. This is true in many aspects of life, and it’s also true for birds. If you have a single bird feeder constantly being mobbed by visitors, then maybe it’s time to put out another one. This will instantly alleviate all the traffic going to a single source, and it’ll help keep your feeding space cleaner longer.
After the Rain
No one likes to eat soggy food, and birds, too, will avoid food that has been out in the rain. Even when it dries, the food is usually moldy, a potential hazard. If you can, set your feeders up under a protected area, away from the rain and damp. If this isn’t an option, then be sure to clean them out after the rain.
The seed you use is only as good as your storage method. Let’s face it—feeding birds is an investment. That’s why it’s worth spending some time and effort to come up with a good seed storage solution. Ideally, you’ll store your seeds in a sealed container, away from mice, squirrels and other critters. This will keep your area tidy and birds healthy.
Power of Bleach
A good rule of thumb is to clean your feeders at least once with every new season. (An exception is hummingbird feeders, which should be cleaned every week or two during the height of the season.) All you need is a little bit of bleach to give them a good cleaning. Scrub with a mixture of 10 parts water to 1 part bleach.
Did You Know?
Thistle seed can get moldy, especially in a new feeder birds haven’t found yet. Solution? Fill your feeder only halfway and clean it regularly.
READER CLEANING TIPS
The easiest way to clean a birdhouse is by first soaking the inside with water using a spray bottle. Then I just scrape out the old nesting materials. – Tom KovachPark Rapids, Minnesota
Here’s an easy way to make your birdbath sparkle. Toss a handful of sand into the basin and scrub it with a clean brush. The grit helps grind away residue. – Marilyn ClancyEnglewood, Florida
I could never get my hummingbird feeders completely clean until I discovered this method. Place a few uncooked navy beans in the feeder with some water, and then gently shake. Even the hard-to-reach crevices come clean. – Lynn RayGreenuP, Illinois
An old toothbrush is my secret weapon for cleaning sugar-water feeders. It’s great for getting into the small feeding ports. – Mrs. David RossHenderson, Tennessee