There are a great deal of reasons why bird feeders need to be kept clean and well sanitized. Completely understanding the importance of maintaining your bird feeders is necessary to the health and well being of all bird species that visit your yard.
One of the most significant reasons why bird feeders must be kept clean is of course to keep your backyard and the surrounding environment healthy and germ free. Soiled and dirty bird feeders can result in the development of molds and bacteria which originate from spoiled bird seed, bird feces and also from other birds that may have been infected. Spreading of infections among birds is high so you must pay attention to these factors. You should check the feeding ports each time you fill your feeders just to be sure. You can scrape any clogged seed out between cleanings for extra measure.
Taking the time to wash and clean your bird feeders is a substantial preventative method to avoid the spreading of suspected bird illnesses. Make sure to clean every part thoroughly and also give it time for all the parts to be completely dry before re-assembling the feeder. This will prevent it from rust or seed clogging.
Apart from these, there are additional reasons why we have to maintain and clean our bird feeders. Spoiled bird seed will lead to the advancement of a stinky smell in your backyard. Birds are rarely impacted from odours because they have an inadequate sense of smell but bad odours could quickly lure other undesireable visitors like rats, cockroaches, flies among other insects. This might introduce infection that could harm your birds.
To reduce the probability of damage to your feeders, you have to keep them clean. Spoiled seed will most likely introduce wood decay which in a short period of time will ruin and destroy your wood feeders. Seed which has already hardened will stick in the feeding ports as well. Clogging of mesh, hinges and especially feeding ports will cause damage to your feeder.
If you put off cleaning your feeders, the metal will rust over time which is obviously harmful to your birds. Also, the plastic components such as the clear seed tube will certainly discolor and go foggy. In the long run, a little bit of effort will save your bank account because your feeders will last a great deal longer and not need to be replaced.
The frequency of cleaning your bird feeders hinges on some factors such as the following:
1.The kind of bird seed you use and also if you have any suet feeders, these are required to be cleaned more often. Bird seed which is higher in oil content are very likely to cause staining and also discoloration of feeders in a short period of time. Apart from this, oily seed will easily get congested in the feeding ports or mesh which is why you need to clean more frequently when using this kind of seed. The amount of discarded seed has to be taken in to consideration because you do not want the area beneath your feeders to be gathering waste and over time, forming bacteria.
2.The amount of birds that visit your feeders is an additional factor to consider. The greater the number you have to feed, the faster your feeders will get dirty which will require more frequent cleaning. There will certainly be a larger number of bird feces every day which can easily generate more bacteria so therefore always take this into consideration.
3.The climate is a big factor to consider. In locations which have chilly and dry climates, feeders could be cleaned less frequently because the bird seed will not get spoiled nearly as fast as it does in a hot and humid environment. More frequent cleaning of feeders is recommended as the left over seed on the feeder can easily get spoiled in warm weather.
Bird feeders must be cleaned immediately when there is a deceased bird around as it will have developed bacteria already. If there are any sick or unhealthy looking birds visiting your feeder you should clean it right away and replace the seed.
To clean your bird feeders you will require a scrub brush, some mild dishsoap, a pail or a large sink and warm water. You can use an old toothbrush to help get into those tight spots. Some manufacturers claim that there feeeders are dishawasher safe but it's not encouraged as it may cause some damage from the extreme heat and do you actually want bacteria or bird feces getting on your dishes?
Make the effort to do this because it is very important to the health of your birds. Not only will it keep your birds free of disease but your feeders will last much longer and the surrounding area will certainly be more pleasing to the eye.