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5 Wild Bird Food Myths You Shouldn’t Buy Into

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If you enjoy the company of wild birds at home, you’re not alone. One of the best parts of living close to nature is seeing the wide variety of woodland creatures who stop by to make themselves at home. Wild birds, of course, make up a large number of said animals, and they come in many different shapes and forms. It’s only natural to set up bird feeders so you can continually enjoy their presence throughout the season!

Unfortunately, there are all kinds of myths and misconceptions about wild birds that are frequently propagated. Some of these are inconsequential, but others might cause people to change their habits when it comes to bird feeding — often to the detriment of the birds. Don’t fall victim to these myths! By knowing the facts about wild birds and how to feed them, you can create a win-win scenario for both you and your avian visitors.

MYTH: Feeding Wild Birds Causes Dependency

It’s easy to believe that you’re causing an “addiction” when you feed wild birds. And, to be totally honest, those fears aren’t completely unfounded. It’s not uncommon for animals to become dependant on humans who feed them a little too generously — such as ducks and geese relying on people to feed them bread. However, if you’re using wild bird food with a feeder, you’re not creating any problems.

Did you know that wild birds get the majority of their diet from the great outdoors? Studies have shown that bird feeders don’t create a dependency, so even if you’re seeing the same bird visitors every single day, you can rest easy knowing that they’re having a good ol’ time foraging outside when they’re not at your feeder.

MYTH: Bird Feeders Prevent Migration

This is somewhat related to the point above. Essentially, the belief is that by feeding birds all year, you get them accustomed to the wild bird food in question, and because there’s a food source readily available, they don’t feel the need to migrate as most other birds do.

The reality is that bird migration is based on a number of factors, and food availability is only one of them. For many birds, migration isn’t made necessary by the amount of food that’s available to them — it’s because the weather is just too cold! Many avian species would have no problem keeping themselves fed if they were just able to stay warm enough to endure the winter chill.

So, the next time you have a bird that stops by your feeder in the wintertime, know that they probably aren’t sticking around because of you — birds either migrate or they don’t, and their decision is based on more significant factors than the bird feeder from which they occasionally dine.

MYTH: Birds Will Get Stuck To Your Metal Feeders In the Winter

Anyone who lives through cold winters has probably experienced the phenomenon of your fingers or tongue sticking to freezing metal surfaces — and everyone else knows it from watching Dumb and Dumber. So it makes sense that one major bird myth is the idea that their little feet get stuck to metal feeders in the winter.

But hold your horses — have you ever actually seen a bird get stuck to your feeder? No? Well, that’s because it doesn’t actually happen. The “sticky frost” effect happens because of moisture, which the human body is full of. The little scaly feet that birds have, though? Not so much. Their feet aren’t going to get stuck, so you can go ahead and cast that worry out of your head.

With that being said, it doesn’t hurt to make your wild bird feeders more winter-friendly during the cold seasons. Even if they don’t get stuck to metal, wild winter birds will appreciate a space that’s sheltered from the elements. Consider keeping your feeder in a nice, dry sheltered area while still being easily accessible.

MYTH: Bird Seed Doesn’t Go Bad

Bird seed is similar to a lot of dry human foods. It takes a lot, for example, for a box of cereal to truly go bad to the point where it shouldn’t be eaten. But even if it’s not “bad,” no one wants to eat cereal when it’s so stale that it feels like you’re chewing on rocks.

Wild bird food is the same way. If you keep it stored for long enough, it will become stale and unappealing at best, and a legitimate health hazard at worst. Bird seed that’s exposed to moisture can grow mold, mildew, and attract bugs and pests. Meanwhile, it can become exceedingly dry if it’s left unattended for too long.

That’s why we recommend that you regularly change out your bird seed in your feeders, even if it’s not being consumed all the way. And, of course, if you’re in need of more wild bird seed, we encourage you to check out our high-quality Armstrong products!

MYTH: Mixed Seeds Are a Bad Choice

There are some who believe that the best choice for a feeder is a singular ingredient — something like sunflower seeds, rice, and so on. The reality is that there’s no better choice for a bird feeder than mixed bird seed. At Armstrong, we do careful and exhaustive research to ensure that our bird food products are mixed with quality ingredients that are universally beneficial for all wild bird species.

There is, of course, a certain degree of customization — different mixed seed products attract different birds. Our Brilliance pack, for example, attracts cardinals, grosbeaks, finches, jays, and chickadees, while Jay’s Blend is more appealing to jays. By going with mixed seed packs, you can attract a variety of different birds. The more, the merrier!

High-Quality Wild Bird Food

If you’re looking for an amazing blend of wild bird food that has been specifically cultivated to be healthy, appealing, and attractive for all kinds of wild birds, you can’t go wrong with our products at Armstrong Milling. We offer a wide assortment of various types of bird foods across a few different brands. For the bird-lover, there is no better option. Now that you’re a little more clear on some of the most common bird myths, consider checking out our products, and heading to your local retailer today to pick them up!