WET BIRD FOOD

I have found it so difficult and frustrating feeding the birds in this wet weather.   

 

Inside the hanging bird feeders the seed gets wet at the  bottom of the feeding ports and is wasted, because it clogs together and forms firm clumps.   These clumps are no longer any good for birds to eat.

 

Seed that has been spoilt by rain is unhealthy for birds

 

This wet bird food clogs the feeder ports and is so difficult to clean.  It takes so much time to bring the feeders in on a dark evening and wash them, clean them and get them dry for the following day.Wet bird food is bad for birds  – and bad for us as well, because it means we have bought bird food just to watch it go mouldy, and then have to throw it away..

 

Even if Iput the hanging bird feeders in among the  branches the rain still hits the bird food and the money I put aside for buying bird food has been wasted.  But, more importanty there is no food the my garden birds

 

I saw a really complicated idea on a Bird Forum.  The idea was a way to keep bird food dry by using old tubs, but it was too time consuming and seemed complicated, so I haven’t tried it. 

 

Any ideas?

3 thoughts on “WET BIRD FOOD

  1. Bev

    Hi Trish, Just read about keeping bird food dry in wet weather and winter. I too find it a challenge and am looking to use a few things in winter that I have done in the past few months.
    For the last few months I have bought and used two large 1mtr x 1mtr greenhouse potting trays from a garden centre and one from e-bay. I stand them on the ground in 2 different parts of the garden and place one mesh ground feeder in one for the large birds, jays pheasants even a duck and that seems to collect spilt food and easy to clean if theres any left at the end of the day! Of course I cant cover that but the large birds eat wet food and if the feeders are wet that day I tip that food in and put fresh out in dry feeders. The trouble is its expensive but the food isn’t wasted. I only put it out that day as wet food isn’t good left out! In the second tray I put the caged feeder in at the moment but am going to get another tray . The kids are saying we know what you want for xmas mum ! How sad am I !!I have tried out the following two ideas. Put the tray or food on the ground (I always use a mesh tray feeder so the food drains if wet) ,then put two large garden pots one on either side and place a larger wider plank on the top high enough for blackbirds to go in but not too high for the rain to blow in too easily. This works ok if its not too windy! The next idea is to put the food in the caged feeder underneath a patio or picnic table in a corner of the garden. Again this might work if not too windy but tried it in the snow last year and worked well as long as the snow isn’t blowing,as then you have to keep clearing it which is a pain but at least the birds go in happily and can eat in peace as haven’t yet seen a sparrow hawk try to get under to get to the birds but I guess that could change depending how hungry they are in winter!! It certainly is difficult to keep the food dry and safe to eat in winter but at least it stays dry longer than if just left uncovered. The large garden trays are so useful as they keep any spilt food inside and much easier to clean , which keeps the birds healthy. At the end of the day I just pick it up wipe it down with Arklense and hose or rinse it off so its clean and ready for the next day. Before it was much more difficult to clean the ground especially in winter and we used to spend ages clearing up other wise spilt food is a hazard for birds if it goes mouldy and also can be attractive to any vermin . I don’t think there is a simple way to keep food dry all the time but at least this helps to keep it drier a lot longer.
    Kind regards Bev.

  2. Bev

    Of course the above idea is only for ground feeders. We have a large squirrel baffle on our feeding pole and have put the feeders UNDER as far as we can . Wont stop the squirrels but we have not so many at the moment, but keeps the tube feeders a bit drier . Not in the wind but there isn’t much more we can do !

  3. Trish Post author

    Hi Bev,

    I’ve put your practical solutions on Bird Table News. Am hoping that someone, sometime will read it and it may help them keep bird food dry

    http://birdtablenews.com/2012/12/keeping-bird-food-dry/

    Thanks for taking the time. I’m covering my ground feeder with old bits of wood and plastic to keep the rain off. Luckily the birds are used to this bird feeder being covered in colourful plastic and bits of wood in winter and they just fly in through the spaces as normal. But the rain and snow still gets in.

    I wish I could find my camera and I would take a photo.

    Thank you and I enjoyed reading it.

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