Are You A "Responsible" Bird Feeder?


If you enjoy feeding and watching your backyard birds, then you probably want to do as much as you can to practice your hobby safely and ensure the birds’ overall health and well-being. Just as people can catch colds or other illnesses from people who are sick, birds that feed at crowded or dirty feeders have the potential to develop diseases that are harmful to them.


While the incidence of birds falling ill from feeders is small compared to other natural hazards birds face, there are things you can do to help your birds stay healthy:

  • Provide multiple feeding stations in different areas of your yard to disperse bird activity.
  • Provide seed from a bird feeder rather than scattering it on the ground.
  • Keep areas clean under and around your feeders.
  • Keep fresh seed in the feeder and be sure it doesn’t get moldy.
  • Clean your bird feeders regularly with a solution of one part bleach and 10 parts water. 

Provide Multiple Feeding Stations

Offering a variety of foods in different feeders and at different locations can help to minimize fighting as well as the spread of disease among your birds.
For example, in one location, you could put up a seed tube feeder with one of our No-Mess Blends for chickadees. In another spot, you could hang a suet feeder for your woodpeckers. And in yet another location try a Nyjer feeder for your goldfinches. The possibilities are endless!




Keep Areas Clean Under Your Feeder

For tidy bird feeding add a tray to your feeder and provide seed blends that have no fillers or shells, such as our No-Mess Blends. That way any food that does make it to the ground will all be eaten by ground feeding birds such as sparrows, towhees, and juncos.



Clean Your Feeders Before Refilling!

Generally, all you need is warm water and some sort of feeder brush that will allow you to scrub the inside. Rinse and dry thoroughly before you refill. If the feeder has any mold in it, or you have noticed sick birds around the feeder, consider cleaning the feeder with a solution of 1 part bleach to 10 parts water. Rinse thoroughly and dry.

And remember, never add fresh seed on top of old seed!




For other tips or questions, stop by our store and talk to one of our Certified Bird Feeding Specialists.