The challenge: More than 1 billion pounds of pesticides are applied in the United States each year. The continent’s most widely used insecticides, called neonicotinoids or “neonics,” are lethal to birds and to the insects that birds consume. Common weed killers used around homes, such as 2, 4-D and glyphosate, can be toxic to wildlife, and glyphosate has been declared a probable human carcinogen.
The cause: Pesticides that are toxic to birds can harm them directly through contact, or if they eat contaminated seeds or prey. Pesticides can also harm birds indirectly by reducing the number of insects that birds need to survive.
A healthy choice for you, your family, and birds: Consider purchasing organic food. Nearly 70 percent of produce sold in the U.S. contains pesticides. Reduce pesticides around your home and garden.
Thanks to our friends at 3billionbirds.org for these suggestions on how we can all help birds.
Share this post and invite your friends to subscribe to Texas Parks & Wildlife magazine to get more tips like this. We have an all access subscription offer.