are bird feeders a bad idea

1. Bird feeders are messy

Birds are not the cleanest of eaters. They scatter seeds and shells everywhere on the ground, according to Rutter, “especially with sunflower seeds or peanuts that come in shells.” “Birds don’t have teeth, so they’re not chewing. However, they may leave behind remnants of those seeds as they approach the actual feed they wish to consume. ”.

Unwanted flowers and plants may sprout beneath your feeder as a result of those leftover seeds. Additionally, birds poop frequently, which means that your bird feeders will be covered in droppings and will require frequent cleaning.

2. There’s a lot of upkeep

According to Rutter, “bird feeders are essentially the dining rooms and kitchens of our backyards.” Thus, bird feeders are comparable to eating utensils, plates, and glasses. ”.

Rutter suggests that we should consider bird feeders in the same way that we wash our dishes and utensils after every use: they require routine maintenance and fresh bird seed. This keeps a feeder clean and stops mold from growing from old or wet seed.

The director of the Wild Bird Fund, Rita McMahon, advises cleaning a bird feeder with a 10 percent bleach and 90 percent water solution at least once a week. And anytime seed gets wet, you’ll want to replace it.

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are bird feeders a bad idea

5. Bird feeders attract unwanted critters

Birdseed can entice non-avian animals into your yard. Loved by squirrels, chipmunks, and raccoons, the seed can turn them destructive, causing them to knock down feeders or gnaw through plastic to get at food. Additionally, you’ll need to devise a system for keeping your bird seed stored because mice and rats can gnaw through plastic bags of seed kept in areas like your garage.

According to Rutter, “you should always make sure that you put any birdseed in an airtight, sealed container,” ideally made of metal.


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Is it bad to have a bird feeder?

Yet emerging evidence suggests that feeding wild birds poses risks. Bird feeders can fuel the spread of avian diseases, alter migratory behavior, help invasive species outcompete natives and give predators, including free-roaming neighborhood cats, easy access to birds and their nestlings.

Are bird feeders bad for ecosystem?

Just as concerning are the ripple effects spiraling beyond our backyards and into broader ecosystems, sometimes negatively impacting birds themselves. Feeders draw unnatural concentrations of multiple species, encouraging disease transmission.

Are bird feeders a nuisance?

For instance, if feeders are not properly placed and maintained, it can draw unwanted wildlife to the yard. Racoons, squirrels, skunks, mice, and larger animals like coyotes, deer, and bears are sometimes unwelcome visitors to an unkempt feeding station.

Where should you not put a bird feeder?

But don’t place the feeder under strong branches that can be used by cats who may lie in wait for unsuspecting birds. “Feeders should be close to cover, but not totally surrounded by cover. A feeder hanging from a tree branch, far enough off the ground, but pretty open underneath is great,” says Holloran.