About us: We own the Wild Birds Unlimited nature shop in East Lansing, Michigan,
a store that provides a wide variety of supplies to help you enjoy the birdwatching hobby.

This blog was created to answer frequently asked questions & to share nature stories and photographs.
To contribute, email me at bloubird@gmail.com.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Plants growing under the feeder

Pokeberry bloom to berry
Someone recently asked if we changed the ingredients in the Wild Birds Unlimited No-Mess blend bird seed because there were plants growing under the feeder. The blend is made up of sunflower seed, peanut pieces, and millet without the shell or hull. It is 100% edible and should not grow anything.

However this summer has been just warm and wet enough for weeds to grow like crazy. But if they aren't coming from the bird seed why do they come up right under the feeders? Well it doesn't come from our bird seed but from the birds themselves. Once they load up with fresh, high fat, high protein, quality bird seed, the have to unload some weight to fly away.

Birds don't just eat at bird feeders. They search widely for food from a variety of plants that produce seed heads and fruit and then excrete the undigested seeds where they perch. If the conditions are right the seed will grow and produce more seeds for the birds to spread even further away.

I don't get a lot of weeds but I pull a few out every time I fill the feeders. Occasionally I get a weed that I like and leave alone. One of my favorites is the Pokeberry, a native Michigan perennial also found throughout the Northeast. They can get out of hand and spread but a few near the feeder are pretty and attract some nice birds including warblers passing through in the fall.

Related Articles:
How to choose the best suet cake http://bit.ly/xATYPQ
How to have more colorful birds at your feeder http://bit.ly/qizlNh
Why do Birds Scatter Seeds from Feeders? http://bit.ly/vZ6gzM
Choosing a seed blend to feed wild birds http://goo.gl/xUGKA

How to get rid of weeds under the bird feeder without using poisons http:/get-rid-of-weeds.html

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