Hockessin, Delaware

Clean feeders’ equal healthy birds!

Each of us enjoys the birds outside our window. We cherish their beauty and marvel at their avian abilities to survive in our man made world. We feed them to benefit them in times of cold and foul weather. We worry when the temperature drops to 15 and stress about the young in the nest box when it’s 95. We become concerned when they’re absent from our feeder stations and are upset when they are preyed on by the hawks. None of us would ever wish for any harm to visit them. That’s why it is imperative that you clean your feeders and feeder station on a regular basis. I don’t mean once a year but you should consider cleaning them once a month. Unfortunately birds are susceptible to diseases just like you and I. As a responsible bird lover there are simple steps you can include that can limit their exposure to possible diseases.

  • We recommend you wash your  bird feeders at least once month with a mild bleach solution (1 part bleach to 9 parts water); scrub them thoroughly; rinse thoroughly; and let air dry thoroughly before filling with seed. I generally use an old 5 gallon paint bucket and soak feeders overnight if they food is heavily caked in it.
  • To prevent issues of old moldy seed on the ground occasionally rake out the area below your feeder station. I find that a large leaf rake works great at distributing the old shells to prevent them from piling up and spoiling. Also switching to a No-Mess feed lessens the remains under the feeders.
  • If your feeding on a deck or patio surface considering hosing down the area when possible. This removes old seed and bird droppings.
  • If you have the area moving your feeders about will lessen the amount of spilled seeds and shells in one spot.
  • If you notice signs of disease in the birds visiting your feeder immediately take steps to wash the feeder and then fill with fresh seed. If diseased birds still appear you may have to take down your feeders for a couple weeks.

If you love your birds as much as we do I hope you’ll take the necessary precautions to make your feeders a healthy way station for the birds.