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Old 08-17-2020, 07:24 PM
 
3,042 posts, read 1,774,238 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ritzui View Post
Birds can get sick and die if they eat sand. I wouldn't put a bird bath because then it's going to be running water which will increase the water bill a lot and it won't even be cold since it gets hot in the summer. I already have a water cooler that hangs on the bird feeder they can drink from but it only works during the spring and fall. The water gets hot very fast in the summer. I know because I tried so every 30 minutes I had to add cold water on the top but can't do that and don't have time for that. In the winter it turns into ice.

Birds are in sand all the time in nature. You're worrying about nothing.
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Old 08-17-2020, 08:29 PM
 
13,657 posts, read 6,534,708 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Curly Q. Bobalink View Post
You just taught me something new, thank you. I never heard of these before, and at "up to 40" long", would not want to run across one myself. There's a reason Madison WI named it's football team the "Badgers", those things can be nasty - I went near a badger enclosure in a wildlife park in IL a few years ago, and the resident gave me Hell, I've never been so glad for chain link fence in my life. My guess is that Fisher Cats are a relative.
They are actually in the weasel family so they are related to badgers too.
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Old 08-22-2020, 10:06 AM
 
402 posts, read 107,270 times
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I decided I will buy rocks but should it be pond pebbles (big) or river pebbles (smaller). Pond Pebbles will fill up the whole more. But the ground will be rockier. Still I will cover them with large plastic black bags and on top of that 12 lbs of natural wheat straw. Can algae or fungus still grow if big rocks are covering that dirt? What will happen? And the same question if they are small rocks? I prefer smaller rocks because the ground will be more flat and less rocky. But can algae or fungus still grow from the dirt if I use the smaller rocks?
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Old 08-22-2020, 02:26 PM
 
Location: on the wind
11,783 posts, read 5,403,516 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ritzui View Post
I decided I will buy rocks but should it be pond pebbles (big) or river pebbles (smaller). Pond Pebbles will fill up the whole more. But the ground will be rockier. Still I will cover them with large plastic black bags and on top of that 12 lbs of natural wheat straw. Can algae or fungus still grow if big rocks are covering that dirt? What will happen? And the same question if they are small rocks? I prefer smaller rocks because the ground will be more flat and less rocky. But can algae or fungus still grow from the dirt if I use the smaller rocks?
If you place organic material (wheatstraw) where it will absorb and hold moisture it will eventually rot; leading to fungus and mold growth. Add a measure of bird poop rot is guaranteed! It contains bacteria and microorganisms that promote decay. That wheatstraw will defeat the purpose! Don't think the size of the rocks will make much difference, but smaller rock will pack tighter. There will be fewer crevices to accumulate and hold bits of organic matter and soil which will encourage plant sprouts. The plastic bags will discourage weed growth if any seeds are present underneath.

You keep trying to create some sort of sterile conditions which is impossible outdoors. Why don't you go back to the plastic mat/tray idea and forget all this complicated bother? Just keep the tray/mat swept up. Or, pour concrete? A lot simpler.
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Old 08-26-2020, 05:07 AM
 
402 posts, read 107,270 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Parnassia View Post
If you place organic material (wheatstraw) where it will absorb and hold moisture it will eventually rot; leading to fungus and mold growth. Add a measure of bird poop rot is guaranteed! It contains bacteria and microorganisms that promote decay. That wheatstraw will defeat the purpose! Don't think the size of the rocks will make much difference, but smaller rock will pack tighter. There will be fewer crevices to accumulate and hold bits of organic matter and soil which will encourage plant sprouts. The plastic bags will discourage weed growth if any seeds are present underneath.

You keep trying to create some sort of sterile conditions which is impossible outdoors. Why don't you go back to the plastic mat/tray idea and forget all this complicated bother? Just keep the tray/mat swept up. Or, pour concrete? A lot simpler.


You are right about the wheat straw growing fungus and mold. For the first time after putting the plastic bags on top of the hole I cleaned it on Sunday and still it happened so it's not coming from the whole. The whole was just dirt and nothing growing there. This is why every week I add another layer of natural wheat straw on top of the existing due to the rain so the birds can't eat the old food. There is no possible way they can reach the very bottom. I am now keeping a tray on one of the bird bowls where they eat from so if it rains all the water will go to the tray. The other bowl I don't fill the food to to the very top anymore. And the bird feeder they eat from that's really impossible and bird seeds will fall from that area no matter what. Other than natural wheat straw what will can I use? It's really impossible to put a mat there because of the shape of the small fence surrounding the bird feeder and the pole- bird feeding station is in the middle. Also mats are not water proof and are not non-toxic and bigger birds can eat from it and even accidentally eat part of the mat and the cleaning would be very hard and dangerous since it will become very slippery and hard for them to walk so that's NO to the mat idea.



I would prefer smaller rocks. I almost bought the small river pepples at Home Depot until I saw the review of one of the customers saying it grow weeds there and that's due to the rocks not being washed and still having dirt and sand on them. Sand by itself can do this and even Home Depot customer service admitted this. I want rocks because it will 1. Cover the whole and 2. Make the bird feeder more straight. It's in very deep but after raking around it, it moves a little back if you push it so a bunch of small rocks around it will make it stronger. It's won't fall or even close to it but it's crooked. I don't want to push it in deeper since it's already low enough. I just need to find washed rocks. I am surprised stores don't sell this and I don't have time to wash several pounds of rocks. So this is my goal right- to find washed rocks. Other than natural wheat straw, what else can I use? concrete is a bad idea. It's not my property so I can't make that big change and just make all of it concrete. I don't even think I would like to. The rocks is good enough but the birds need something soft to walk on. I have seen some birds push other birds off the bird feeder and sometimes they land on the ground. Landing on concrete wouldn't be a smart idea.
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