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Birds need water in every season! Too many backyard birders deprive our feathered friends by putting away their bird baths for the winter months instead of winterizing them, while not all bird baths can stay out in the snow, we're here to tell you how you can keep providing birds with water while protecting your bird bath!
What Can Be Winterized?
Not all bird baths can be winterized. It's important to take the construction and make of you bird bath into account before winterizing them. Not all of them are suitable for winter use.
What NOT To Winterize
Solar Bird Baths
Delicate Glass Styles
Ceramic and Concrete (also subject to some damage)
What TO Winterize
If you're removing a bird bath from your yard and choosing not to use it until spring, thoroughly clean it out and completely dry it before the temperatures drop! Move it to an enclosed location (like a garage or shed) or wrap it completely in plastic, securing ends with rope or fishing line for extra security.
How Do I Winterize My Bird Bath?
A few simple steps are necessary to make sure your bird bath is kept safe and practical for winter use!
Empty and clean the bath, sterilizing it with a weak bleach solution. Algae and bacteria are less likely to grow in the cold weather if you do this.
Move the bath to a more suitable winter location (if possible). For example, if you move your bird bath to a more sunny location in the winter, it will stay unfrozen for longer periods of time.
Add a tennis ball to float. The steady movement of the ball will help to break up the ice as it forms, keeping the water in its liquid form more easily! The bright color of the ball will also attract the birds attention, so you'd really be helping them out!
Add several sturdy twigs across the top of the bird bath to provide additional perches for drinking birds as well as to discourage bathing (if desired). Most birds don't bathe when temperatures are low enough to freeze the water on their feathers anyway, but many people feel better preventing it all together...just in case!
Fill your bath regularly with clean, fresh water and enjoy watching the birds appreciate the drinks you provide them all winter long!
Some Extra Tips for Winter Bird Baths
Many birds will visit your bird bath over the course of the winter months. It's important to keep your bath safe as well as appealing throughout the cold winter ahead!
Keep the fresh water coming! Low water levels freeze more easily and you can avoid this by continuing to add water to your bath on a regular basis.
Never use chemicals/additives to prevent the water from freezing up.These are toxic to birds and can potentially be deadly!
Continue to clean your bath. When cleaning, you can also clean the perches or edges around where birds rest to drink.