will coffee grounds deter birds

Coffee can be grown under the shade of a canopy, or it can be grown out in the open sun. So-called “sun coffee” is resource-intensive and offers far less habitat for birds. “Shade-grown coffee” tends to support more bird species and require fewer pesticides and fertilizers—although different kinds of shade coffee can be better or worse for birds and the environment. Here’s the background:

The Dutch introduced coffee to the New World in the 1700s as a forest-floor crop grown under a dense overhead forest canopy. Today some coffee farms still use this traditional, rustic method of growing coffee. Artificial fertilizers aren’t as necessary, because decaying leaf litter recycles nutrients to feed the coffee plants. Pesticides aren’t needed, because more birds are around to eat insect pests. Many tasters find this rustic coffee yields a higher quality brew that tastes richer. This is partly because forest coffee isn’t machine harvested but picked by hand, allowing people to choose only the ripe coffee berries.

But modernization in coffee growing has introduced sun-tolerant varieties of coffee that can be grown in the open and tend to have higher yields than shade-grown coffee. The technique is much harder on the environment, however. Forest must be cut down; pesticides and fertilizers are employed to stimulate yields, and higher profits. In some places, sun-grown coffee has come to dominate the landscape. For example, in Colombia, about 70 percent of coffee croplands have been converted to sun-grown operations.

Shade-coffee farms beneath forest canopy provide critical strongholds of quality habitat for Neotropical migrants, according to Bridget Stutchbury of Toronto’s York University. At least 42 species of North American migrant songbirds spend winters in coffee plantations, and 22 of those species have declining population trends, Stutchbury said. This makes traditional coffee farms an important resource. Conversion of tropical forest to sun-grown operations is happening right now, when songbirds can least afford to cede more ground.

All About Birds is a free resource

Available for everyone, funded by donors like you

American Kestrel by Blair Dudeck / Macaulay Library Search for species name or keywords

Or Browse Bird Guide by Family or Shape

Need Bird ID Help? Try Merlin

I purchase a big bag of used coffee grounds from a nearby coffee shop once a week. I place these in the compost pile after spreading them over my vegetable beds. What are the best ways to use them and what are the advantages and disadvantages of doing so? There are only advantages. Although coffee is acidic in nature, the brewing process makes the coffee grounds neutral. They are an excellent source of nitrogen, so a lot of carbon-heavy materials, like cardboard, torn-up newspaper, or light, twiggy growth, are needed to balance them out. Because worms adore the stuff and quickly move it to lower levels in the soil, where it enhances soil structure and moisture retention, adding the grounds directly to the soil also works. The majority of advice suggests incorporating the ground into the soil instead of leaving it on top for natural incorporation, but I don’t see why you shouldn’t

Blackbirds kept pulling up my sedums in a pot, so I gave up trying to grow them. They are now concentrating on my newly acquired bedding plants, the viola and impatiens, pulling them up and pecking them to death. The moment I transplant the less damaged ones, they are uprooted once more. The secret might be to keep the pots out of the birds’ reach until the roots have intertwined to discourage them. Grow the pot in your greenhouse if you have one until the growth is dense and established, which will make it more difficult for the blackbirds to hoick out. If you don’t have a greenhouse, you will need to find a way to keep the pot safe while it grows. I would recommend covering the pot with a small cage made of chicken wire. Water well to encourage good, strong growth, too. It’s true that this setup may seem unattractive, but after a few weeks you should be able to take out the cage and take in the beauty of the plants.

FAQ

Do birds avoid coffee grounds?

Caffeine – Coffee beans, coffee grounds, tea and soda. The effects of caffeine can cause cardiac distress, hyperactivity and possible cardiac arrest. Chocolate – Chocolate will induce vomiting and diarrhea in a bird, but more importantly, it will affect the central nervous system and eventually cause death.

Why should you sprinkle coffee grounds around your bird feeder?

It just deters them, that’s all. So it’s a very humane method to keeping your bird feeder for well, just birds. You’ll want to sprinkle roughly a one-inch layer of coffee grounds around your bird feeder will get the job done. It doesn’t even matter whether they’re decaf or regular.

What animals do coffee grounds keep away?

Using Coffee Grounds in the Garden Sprinkling coffee grounds among your plants may help to ward off rabbits and other small mammals due to coffee’s powerful scent. Plus, it composts naturally over time, giving your plants some extra nutrients!

Is coffee smell bad for birds?

So if you’re brewing your coffee the smell of it won’t have any dangerous effect on your dear bird. Just be sure to not actually let them consume any coffee or coffee beans, even decaf has enough caffeine in it to potentially cause deadly heart problems for birds.