Photo Credit: Sleeping Western Screech Owl in Wild Wing Co. nest box.
Photo taken Yountville, CA by John Schuster
John Schuster, owner of Wild Wing Company, based in Cotati spoke out this week on the implications of the serious issue of chemically-laden wild bird feeder seed having been sold in vast volumes to an unsuspecting public.
"I'm not a big fan of bird feeders or feeding birds seeds, as improperly managed areas tend to lure rats and other unwanted vertebrate pests to those locations. I recommend that you lure avians to your backyard with running water (i.e. fountains or ponds) and plants which provide berries or seeds during harsh winter months," said Schuster. "If you must use bird feeders, please go organic."
A compelling article on the site www.care2.com goes into greater detail on specific bird feed companies that have been fined for the distribution of toxic products while Americans continue to shell out billions of dollars a year for our feathered friends.
According to the American Bird Conservancy, ongoing habitat loss has led to the decline of some 200 species of North American birds. While the Conservancy supports backyard feeders as lifeline for many species, Schuster's more natural approach to providing the necessary foliage for wild bird habitat is more ideal.