🕊 New Jersey is home to about 50 species of birds

🕊 Many can be found hanging out in backyard bird feeders

🕊 Dirty bird feeders can be potentially fatal to birds

New Jersey is lucky to be home to many species of wildlife. When it comes to birds, did you know that 50 species are commonly found in the Garden State?

They range from field sparrows, mockingbirds, robins, and bluebirds to woodpeckers, mallards, hawks, wild turkeys, warblers, and more.

You’ve probably seen many of these birds hanging out in your front or back yards and may not even have known it.

One way to attract some of Jersey’s native birds is to install bird feeders. But be careful. Like anything else, bird feeders must be cleaned often. A dirty bird feeder can potentially be deadly to birds.

Two of the most common diseases seen in backyard birds are salmonella and avian conjunctivitis, according to the NJ Audubon Cape May Bird Observatory.

Salmonella usually comes in with birds on their feet or feces. When multiple species of birds concentrate at a feeder, the chances of them bringing in salmonella are likely.  This, in turn, increases the rate of transmission.

With avian conjunctivitis, a bird’s eyes will be partially or completely closed. It is not fatal to birds per se, but it could put them in a weakened state, making them vulnerable to predators.

LOOK: Most commonly seen birds in New Jersey

Stacker compiled a list of the most common birds seen in New Jersey from Project FeederWatch.

It is so important to clean or disinfect the feeder weekly and replace it with fresh, dry food.

After it rains, obviously the birdseed gets wet. Dump the wet seed from the feeder, and clean it before replacing it with dry seed.

It is suggested that a 10% bleach solution or just an ounce of bleach and a gallon of water in a bucket should do the trick. Scrub the feeders clean. Let them air-dry before putting them back up with fresh food.

If you notice a sick, listless, or lethargic bird, do not handle it. It’s best to contact the New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife which will help find a licensed rehabilitator to come out to the property and assess the situation.

So, next time you’re doing dishes and looking out the kitchen window, or sitting outside in the backyard, be sure to check out all of the wonderful birds New Jersey birds fluttering through your yard.

Nature is beautiful.

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