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How to Kill Bird Seed With Heat

By Elizabeth Knoll ; Updated September 21, 2017

By having bird feeders in your yard, you not only benefit the birds by providing them quality nutrition, but you also get to visually enjoy their presence. Listening to the birds sing in your yard can be a potent stress reliever. However, the bird seeds can pose a problem to your garden beds and lawn. Birds are messy and some of the seeds will inevitably end up on your lawn or in your garden beds. Some of those seeds will sprout, and without proper attention, many weeds can exist in short order. A simple solution to this is to kill bird seed with heat before feeding the birds. The seed is still safe and nutritious for the birds, but will no longer be able to sprout in your lawn or garden beds.

Take your bag of bird seed and fill paper bags with a gallon of bird seed in each. For the first batch you can fill up a gallon jug to get the measurement and then it will be fine to estimate the rest.

Put each bag in the microwave. Set the timer to 5 minutes and the heat setting to "high". Turn the microwave on. Remove and let cool.

Use a conventional oven if you don't have access to a microwave. Spread the seed out on a baking sheet. Cook at 300 degrees F for 30 minutes. Remove and let cool.

Continue to microwave or bake each batch until all your seeds are sterilized.

Fill the bird feeder with the seeds. You won't have to worry about unsightly weeds sprouting up in your garden beds or your lawn.


Things You Will Need

  • Gallon jug
  • Paper bags
  • Baking sheet


  • You can also install a catch tray under the bird feeder. This will catch the seeds that are thrown out of the feeder. This will further increase your protection from unwanted germination when combined with the steps outlined above.