Keeping your feeders clean is an essential activity that should be carried out as frequently as once per month to prevent your garden birds catching and/or spreading harmful bacterial diseases. Regular cleaning can prevent this from happening, and the appropriate use of safe materials (shown below) can even prevent bacteria growing on your feeders.
A classic example of disease spreading is in the case of the Greenfinch, a common garden bird that is unfortunately in decline due to its susceptibility to catching trichomonosis, which is spread through saliva. This is often spread because birds can simultaneously feed on single feeders. Watch out for pigeons and doves as these specific birds can carry the disease.
It’s always good practice to wear rubber gloves prior to handling a bird feeder; and also ensure to clean the feeders outdoors rather than indoors.
How to clean your wild bird feeders
Here’s our list of key points to consider when cleaning your feeders:
- Always empty the contents of the feeder before cleaning
- Spray sanitizer on and in the feeder, or wash out fully with a concentrate-based formula
- Use a cleaning brush to remove any excess dirt from within the feeder
- Wipe the feeder with a paper towle
- Leave the bird feeder to dry fully before using again
- Now, you should be ready to refill your feeder