cleary-keepingitclean-2016.pdf (72.9 kB)
Keeping it clean: Bird bath hygiene in urban and rural areas
journal contributionposted on 2016-01-01, 00:00 authored by Grainne ClearyGrainne Cleary, B R Coleman, A Davis, D N Jones, Kelly MillerKelly Miller, H Parsons
In a dry continent like Australia where the provision of water in bird baths is a common and popular practice, very little is known about it. We describe the use of different types of bird baths and how these were maintained by residents (n1,728 respondents). The most commonly monitored bird baths were pedestal/elevated baths (>80%). Participants refilled bird baths more frequently in summer compared with winter (water changed once a day: Winter respondents, 37.5%; summer respondents, 53.8%). Bird baths were also cleaned regularly ('Yes I do': 26.4%; winter respondents, 23.1%; summer respondents; 'I do but not every time', 55.6% winter respondents, 58.6% summer respondents). Overall our study indicates good hygiene practices for the maintenance of bird baths, which may help prevent the spread of avian diseases; and that residents are providing water seemingly based on the perceived need for water by birds.