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Article: Winter Survival for Northern Birds: Question

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steadycam3
Houston Heights, TX
(Zone 9a)

January 15, 2011
1:48 PM

Post #8312194

How does one provide water for birds and pets outside without growing mosquitoes?

Mrs_Ed

Mrs_Ed
Whiteside County, IL
(Zone 5a)

January 15, 2011
2:00 PM

Post #8312223

Hi!

There are several products out that deter mosquitos in bird baths during the summer season. One is a water wiggler. It sends little ripples through the water. Since mosquitos like stagnant water, any moving water is unattractive for them to lay eggs. There are also some biological controls, one by Microbe LIft, who make other supplies for ponds. Also an item called mosquito dunks. Or, you can simply make sure you put new water in the bath once a week. I understand that is the cycle of the mosquito from egg to larva. If you have lots of birds in it, you probably need to keep filling it anyway, and their activity in it prevents enough movement.

In my pond, I have fish to take care of mosquitoes.

You probably have more mosquitos breeding in gutters and planter saucers than you do in a bird bath.

And of course in the winter, you do not have to worry about mosquitoes. You DO have to worry about frozen water though.

Hope this helps.


steadycam3
Houston Heights, TX
(Zone 9a)

January 15, 2011
2:21 PM

Post #8312255

Thanks so much for the info. I did not know if the microbes in mosquito dunks and such are harmful to birds or pets and since we dont have much of a winter here, mosquitoes only slow down a bit in our "winter". We have to be diligent about keeping containers empty of water here as you are correct, they will breed in a bottle cap dropped on the ground if there is water in it. I like the rippler thing idea a lot. I harvest rain water and all my containers must have screens or I really would contribute to the population! Here we dont have to worry so much about the water in the bath freezing as it might only do so one or two nights a season. My neighbor's cat is an outdoor cat who eats lunch at my place daily and I try to keep some water available to him as well. His water is changed daily so I guess I could just make sure the bird bath is changed out daily as well. I enjoy your participation on DG so very much and really make use of your article on butterflies and caterpillar ID which I saw when I first joined. Thanks so much from us all. Cam

Mrs_Ed

Mrs_Ed
Whiteside County, IL
(Zone 5a)

January 15, 2011
4:28 PM

Post #8312414

Hey Cam,

Glad you liked it. Oh yes, I should have looked at what zone you were in.

The biology is supposed to be safe for pets and birds. At least that's what they tell you. However, I have alway chosen not to use it in my pond, "just in case." Another option for you might be a bird bath dripper. This would also create movement in the water and the noise would draw in the birds. And finally, you might look at a small fountain-like bird bath that would be continuously moving. There are solar inserts that some have success with, so you would not have to buy a whole new fountain.

Ah butterflies! I can't wait to see my first of the season.


Marna



steadycam3
Houston Heights, TX
(Zone 9a)

January 15, 2011
11:24 PM

Post #8312921

Thanks for the tips. I will look into your suggestions. Cam

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Other Article: Winter Survival for Northern Birds Threads you might be interested in:

SubjectThread StarterRepliesLast Post
Thank you! Lily_love 1 Dec 13, 2008 1:46 PM
Great Article! gabagoo 1 Dec 13, 2008 5:00 PM
water cathy4 1 Dec 13, 2008 5:01 PM
Another great article Marna! dellrose 3 Dec 13, 2008 11:38 PM
Happy Birthday, Marna! beckygardener 3 Dec 14, 2008 3:42 AM


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