How to clean a bird bath in twelve photos!
Keeping a birdbath sparkling clean is easy and it’s worth a bit of effort to keep your wild birds happy and healthy. Algae may be a natural thing, but it’s not attractive when your bird bath is within sight of your windows like you want it. It takes about 20 minutes or so to clean this one and 15 minutes of it is waiting!
This cement birdbath has several turquoise insulators in it, the kind that used to insulate telephone wires from the wooden poles. It’s surrounded by shrubbery and is within sight of my living room windows where I can watch the birds in all seasons. The birds come to bathe here as well as to drink and I want my birdbath to be a sparkling jewel in my garden. Every few weeks, here’s what I do:
Diluted bleach kills the algae and salmonella and many more germs quickly,…you can see how fast and effective it is. The time is 10-15 minutes for it to work!
Once you clean the birdbath the bleach is gone. Pennies, vinegar, baking soda do not do the job of killing algae and germs. Toilet bowl cleaner is an expensive way to go when you think that bleach is often an ingredient.
Diluted bleach kills the algae and salmonella and MANY more germs quickly,…you can see how fast and effectively it works in the demonstration photos.
Ten minute job and healthy birds,…no more pathogens from the algae remain for birds to drink.
The Science behind the Process
Merri Scott says, “Bleach has a fairly rapid dissipation rate, especially at ambient temperatures. If it didn’t, I wouldn’t have to put chlorine in my pool as often. Some pool algaecides also have copper in them, but I am not sure that pennies ‘break down’ the copper enough.”
The Garden Professors add, “Bleach and water form hypochlorous acid and that is what actually disinfects. This is the same process when using bleach for emergency disinfection of drinking water.”
If you totally object to using bleach to disinfect, then use detergent and scrub, scrub, scrub.
Keep your birds safe and use this method!
I found the insulators at a yard sale….they go good in the birdbath, don’t they?
Never mix bleach with ammonia or other cleaners.