Hi Mark, I would say it very much depends on the make of your bird-feeder whether it is suitable to go in a dishwasher and the manufacturers should have information on their website about cleaning the feeders. I think some of the plastic seed feeder tubes should not be washed that way and may send the plastic cloudy and brittle so I wouldn't risk it. Squirrel buster type feeders I believe are ok in a dishwasher.
Personally, I dismantle all my feeders, including the perches and wash them in a bowl of hot soapy water with a touch of disinfectant and then I thoroughly rinse them and leave to air dry before refilling with seeds/nuts, etc. In between feeder cleaning, I use Ark-Klens on the perches as finches in particular are messy eaters and can pass on disease. Hope this info helps.
"Each kindness shown to birds or men is sure to flutter back again"
In reply to HAZY:
Hi Hazel, thanks for taking the time to reply. I'm fortunate to have more feeders than I need and therefore can take them 'out of service' to complete a strip-down and clean thoroughly as you've suggested.
My question was asked whilst feeling particularly lazy!
In reply to Mark:
HI Mark, it is a bit of a fiddle having to dismantle and clean the feeders although there are easy clean ones now available like Ring-Pull ones. I try minimise how many I put out and rotate them taking one down for cleaning and replacing it with a fresh feeder allowing me to clean the dirty feeder in my own time; I don't fill them to top, especially if it is damp weather and I let them empty before refilling or topping up unless the seed goes within a day or two. If I get a bit lazy (as we all do from time to time ! ) and the feeder doesn't look too grubby I use a wet wipe on the perches or Ark-Klens spray and do a quick wipe over the rest of the feeder to remove bird poo, etc, The very fact you enquired about cleaning feeders means you are already fully aware about feeder hygiene so you are 90% there already ! If only more folk who feed birds would understand the importance of keeping feeders and feeding station areas clean to prevent diseases, etc., I've always thought it better not to feed birds at all if you are not going to follow it through with regular routine cleaning of feeders and areas. So well done and enjoy those lovely visiting garden birds who will be even ore grateful for the food you put out once the weather heads more into winter.
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