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Old 10-11-2013, 07:52 AM   #1
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bluebirdhappiness Bird feeders should be cleaned regularly

Bird feeders should be cleaned regularly
Article by: VAL CUNNINGHAM , Special to the Star Tribune
Updated: June 4, 2013 - 3:20 PM

http://www.startribune.com/lifestyle/homegarden/210113381.html
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Q: How often, really, do I need to clean my bird feeders?

A: Iím glad you asked that question, because this is a topic that simply doesnít get enough attention. We arenít doing birds any favors if we offer them food in filthy feeders ó these spread diseases that can sicken and even kill avian visitors.

Some of us may assume that winterís cold is enough to kill off harmful bacteria, but this isnít always true. The two major bacterial diseases that can be transmitted from bird to bird at feeders are salmonella and avian conjunctivitis, both of which can lead to...
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Old 10-30-2013, 03:51 PM   #2
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Old 10-30-2013, 09:28 PM   #3
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Thanks for bumping this up, Sage. I missed it the first time.

Years ago, I read an article that suggested if we love birds, we should not encourage them to congregate in one area for such a long period. In nature they pick through what nature provides, then move on when the food supply is gone.

I still feed, but I've tried to rotate where I put the seed. This year, I planted sunflowers, but too few survived to produce seed...I wonder how many acres I'd need to grow the amount I put out in one season. My thoughts were to put out the seed heads (pushing their stalks in the ground--or snow), thinking that would more match nature.

It is hard for me to give up bird feeding, but I'm beginning to think it is not a very healthy situation for the birds. I do want to plant enough natives to provide food naturally...but, once it is gone, they'll move on. I'm not there yet, but it is in the back of my mind.
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