Method 2: Maintenance – Less Than One Month Since the Previous Cleaning – So you’ve cleaned the area beneath your bird feeder within the past month. Congratulations, that is fantastic! You are among the top, and I applaud you for your accomplishments.
Subsequent cleanups will be significantly simpler. Only a garbage bag and shop vacuum are required. If sprouts are present, remove them and place them in the bag. (There should be very few sprouts, if any). Vacuum the seed and pour the contents into a garbage bag. The region should now be devoid of debris.
Wondering how to maintain a clean space beneath your bird feeders? We’ll discuss this next. The area beneath the bird feeder is naturally unclean, and wild birds can transmit pathogens. For this reason, I advise employing a shop vacuum that is dedicated solely to this task.
Can bird seed be left on the ground?
Perhaps you’ve chosen to experiment with feeding birds. You have purchased a bag of bird seed. Now you wonder. What bird feeder should I purchase? Many of them are really costly. Do I even need a bird feeder? Can I simply scatter bird seed on the ground in my yard? You may really scatter bird seed on the ground.
|White-crowned Sparrow Photo by Greg Gillson|
Moldy or decaying seeds and hulls accumulating on feeder trays can make birds ill. Additionally, bird droppings and other pollutants may transmit contagious bird illnesses. Clean your bird feeders approximately every two weeks, or more frequently if there have been reports of salmonella in your region or you have observed ill birds in your yard.
To clean your feeder, disassemble it and run it through a hot dishwasher cycle or hand-wash it with soap and boiling water or a diluted bleach solution (no more than 1 part bleach to 9 parts water). Before refilling, carefully rinse and allow the container to dry. Additionally, clean the ground beneath your feeders to prevent the accumulation of hulls, uneaten seeds, and other debris.
Moldy or rotten food is hazardous for both birds and your outdoor pets. In addition, bird food strewn on the ground might attract undesirable vermin.
What is the optimal material for placing beneath a bird feeder?
Simple Methods for Cleaning Below Bird Feeders – Here are a few methods for cleaning beneath bird feeders. Although one strategy may not be helpful in every yard, the most efficient way to maintain the ground clean is to employ as many strategies as possible.
Rake the ground to loosen hulls and debris, then use a leaf vacuum or outdoor shop vacuum to gather and properly dispose of the waste. Each month, move feeders to a different area in the yard, allowing each previous location to decay naturally before being used again. Add a 3 to 4 inch layer of mulch behind the feeders, and then flip the mulch to bury any trash so that it can degrade out of sight.
Seasonally replace the mulch to remove any residual debris. Allow feeders to stay empty for one or two days to encourage ground-feeding birds to clean up spilled seed on their own. Trim the grass surrounding the feeder shorter than the rest of the lawn to make trash removal easier, and mow the area around the feeder with a collecting bag to facilitate disposal.
Allow squirrels and chipmunks to feed beneath the feeders instead of deterring them, but use baffles and other ways to squirrel-proof the feeders to prevent seed spillage. Consider applying sprays containing natural enzymes (available at garden centers) to hasten decomposition. Always read cautionary warnings thoroughly when applying sprays around children and animals, and ensure that sprays are acceptable for use on other plants in the yard.
It may be hard to pick up every single seed husk or bit of seed that has been spilled. It is feasible, however, to maintain the ground beneath bird feeders safe, healthy, and aesthetically pleasing by systematically employing various cleaning strategies.
As they hunt for their preferred food, birds discard unpalatable seeds from the feeder. The birds discard the inedible seed coats and consume the edible kernels. Birds may knock seed out of the feeder by mistake.
Will birds eat damp bird seed?
Problems With Wet Birdseed – Wet birdseed isn’t only unpleasant; it may also cause a variety of issues at backyard feeding stations, including: Mold. Wet seed deteriorates and molds more rapidly, fostering the growth of germs that can infect and kill backyard birds.
Birds are less likely to consume damaged seed, generating waste and possibly discouraging birds from visiting feeders if they have access to alternative food sources. Smell. The musty, stale odor of wet birdseed diminishes the appeal of a feeding station; while birds are unlikely to be affected by the odor, birdwatchers will not like it.
Strong odors attract predators and feeder pests such as mice, rats, raccoons, and bears, which can cause feeder damage and other issues. Stickiness. Wet seed, especially oily seeds like black oil sunflower seeds, hulled sunflower seeds, and Nyjer, clumps.
Large clumps might jam feeding ports, making seed less accessible to birds. Wet seed can also generate greasy streaks, diminishing the visual appeal of the feeding station. Sprouting. When birdseed is exposed to moisture, the seeds may germinate and sprout. Birds will not consume sprouted seed, thus not only does the seed go to waste, but it may also be discarded from the feeder and sprout in the lawn.
This generates ugly growths and destroys the flowerbeds, lawns, and gardens surrounding bird feeders.