Madison, Wisconsin

Bob & Jan Ross

Bob & Jan Ross

We’re passionate about birds and nature. That’s why we opened a Wild Birds Unlimited Nature Shop in our community.

Madison, Wisconsin

8402 Old Sauk Road
Madison, WI 53562

Phone: (608) 664-1414
Fax: (608) 664-1416
Email: Send Message

Store Hours:
Mon - Fri: 9:00 am - 7:00 pm
Sat: 9:00 am - 6:00 pm
Sun: 11:00 am - 5:00 pm

Comments:
Location: We are located just West of the Beltline exit to Old Sauk Road about 1.5 blocks, just west one store after the Walgreens on your right, at the intersection of Old Sauk Road and Junction Road.

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Common Myths about Birds and Feeding Birds

 

1) DOES WINTER BIRD FEEDING PROMOTE


DEPENDENCY?

 

MARGARET C. BRITTINGHAM 1 AND STANLEY A. TEMPLE

 

Department of Wildlife Ecology


University of Wisconsin


Madison, Wisconsin 53706 USA

 

Research Abstract.--Winter bird feeding is generally assumed to


benefit the birds using this food source, but there are some potential


risks associated with bird feeding. One assumption is the risk that

 

individuals using feeders may become overly dependent on this

 

supplemental food supply and either fail to develop or lose the skills needed to forage efficiently on natural food when feeders are not available.

 

Survival rates of a resident population of Black-capped Chickadees

 

(Parus atricapillus) that were regular feeder users, and thus

 

potentially dependent, were compared with those of a resident

 

population of chickadees that had never been exposed to a bird

 

feeder, during a winter when feeders were not available to either

 

group.

 

No difference was found betweent he average( +SD) monthly survival

rates of chickadees that had used feeders in the past (0.84 + 0.13)

and those that had never used feeders( 0.85 q- 0.12).


There was no evidence that bird feeding promotes dependency.

 

The Cornell Lab of Ornithology states in their FeederWatch

information that bird feeders are very unlikely to create dependency.

Birds have evolved as wide-ranging foragers. They visit several food

sources during the course of a typical day, and a feeder is likely to

be only one of many stops on their daily route. However, the Lab

does suggest maintaining feeders, if at all possible, during the

coldest weather, particularly if the ground is frozen or snow covered.

 

2)  Will feeding birds in late summer stop

 

their migration?

 

Some people believe they should stop feeding birds right after

Labor Day because the birds’ southward migrations will be

interrupted. However, a bird’s migratory urge is primarily

triggered by day length (photoperiod), and even an abundance

of foods at your feeders will not make a bird resist that urge. In

fact, your feeder might provide a needed energy boost along a

bird’s migration route.

 

From “Project Feederwatch” Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology