Although a bird feeder should always take priority over a bird bath, the former should be placed elsewhere as the latter is where birds are more likely to defecate.
A bird feeder and bird bath should be separated by at least 10 feet. When a bird bath is placed too close to hanging bird feeders, the droppings from the feeders will blow sideways into the bath. If you notice a lot of bird excrement in the water, you may need to relocate the bird feeder, but this should never be your top priority.
I can assure you that even though your yard is small, you shouldn’t give up on providing a bird bath and feeders if doing so will help the birds in your area.
It is recommended that a bird bath be placed at least 10 feet away from bird feeders, but the more space you have between the two, the better.
When planning your garden, bird feeders should take precedence over bird baths since year-round access to food is essential for the survival of the most common backyard species.
Natural food can become scarce if birds rely solely on you to provide it; this is because fewer people are using bird baths now that water is so readily available in the wild.
If birds can see your bird bath from where they are sitting on your feeders, you may be able to entice them to utilize it for a drink or a bath.
Place bird feeders in a spot with good visibility and a lot of open space, but not too far from trees or other natural cover, in case the birds need to take cover.
Bird feeders and baths should be placed in the same general area, but the latter absolutely requires a more prime location.
Far as you can spare
If you have a single or multiple bird feeders in the same area, you should place the bird bath as far away from the feeders as possible.
Birds are more likely to visit your yard if you provide them with a source of food that fits their nutritional requirements, whereas a bird bath is less of a priority outside of the warmer months, when birds are more likely to use it to preen or rehydrate.
If you have a small yard, the question of how far away a bird bath and a bird feeder should be is irrelevant.
The consequence of providing food and water is that your bird bath may get more contaminated with bird poop if it is placed under or too close to perching birds.
If your backyard has enough room, put them far enough apart so that the bird bath and bird feeders can still be seen by migrating birds or by those that have temporarily landed in your yard to rest.
Still, I feel obligated to insist that you put bird feeders ahead of a bird bath, as the food the feeders provide is essential to the birds’ survival.
It’s important to keep the area around bird feeders and bird baths clean, as well as to keep the feeders and baths stocked with fresh food and water.
10 feet minimum
If you can’t afford more room, a bird bath placed within two feet of a feeder will do; you’ll simply need to remember to clean it more frequently.
However, placing bird baths no more than 10 feet apart can ensure that bird feces does not quickly accumulate in the water.
While a bird bath need not be precisely underneath a bird feeder, it should be within 6 feet so that any droppings can be easily carried by the wind.
If you want to err on the side of caution, put at least 10 feet of space between the bird bath and the feeder.
You could put the bird bath in a more distant location, which would allow you to start blocking it off or hiding it in a spot that the birds never go to.
In addition, if your yard is very small, a bird bath and bird feeder need not be placed far apart from one another.
The placement of your bird feeders should come first, followed by the secure placement of your bird bath, both of which should be easily accessible at all times.
Change location accordingly
Putting your bird bath in a different location from your bird feeders allows you the flexibility to rearrange things if necessary.
Bird feeders can be hung from a pole and the bird bath can be placed nearby or anywhere else in the yard if there’s enough room.
If your bird feeder is collecting dust, move it closer to the birds or swap it with the bird bath. If your bird feeders are collecting dust, wait a little and then rearrange them.
Only bird feeders should be placed in an easily accessible and highly visible position; a bird bath should be kept as a constant secondary focus.
Make sure that hanging bird feeders or placing them on a platform where they may be seen by passing birds is a top priority.
Don’t move the feeders just to accommodate a bird bath that gets used a fraction as often. If the feeders have to be hung from a tree, then do so; however, if the bird bath has to be right below it, then at least offset the bird bath to prevent bird droppings.
Prioritize bird feeder placement
Most bird feeders are mounted to a bracket on a fence or a brick wall, or suspended from a pole in the middle of the yard.
In most cases, bird feeders will be placed smack in the middle of the yard.
The hanging bird feeders will be more visible to passing birds and the birds that regularly visit your yard to feed.
Imagine, then, moving a bird feeder to a less-than-ideal location so that a bird bath could be installed there.
Birds prefer open areas to eat with nearby shelter, such as bushes or trees.
Keeping bird feeders close to bushes, say, 10 feet away, is ideal; never move feeders further apart to make room for a bird bath set in between, though this can work if there’s room.
Hummingbird feeders, like peanut, suet, and seed feeders, are most effective when hung from a bird feeder pole and placed in a bright, open area where the birds can feed without disturbing anyone.
Placement of bird feeders should be given preference over that of bird baths of any kind, while this in no way diminishes the importance of providing a bird bath.
Birds can and should still utilize a bird bath in your yard, so keep it in its current location and provide feeders for local birds within close proximity.
To sum up, make sure your bird feeders are at least four to six feet above the ground, and never at the same level as a bird bath.
To summarize up
You can supply information on the recommended distance between a bird bath and a bird feeder, and if a feeder has to be hung above a bird bath, so be it.
Placing a bird bath just below a bird feeder is a bad idea since the water will inevitably become contaminated with bird poop. Bird poop can still be carried by the wind to a bird bath that is located near a tree where birds are fed.
It’s inevitable that birds will continue to defecate in a bird bath.
When deciding between a bird feeder or a set of feeders and a bird bath, the latter should take a back seat because of the greater importance of feeding wild birds.
The only caveat to using a bird bath alongside a bird feeder is keeping the birds from defecating in the water.
Put up bird feeders and a bird bath with at least 10 feet between them if your property is large enough.
Of course, wind can carry bird poop, but that’s about the extent of the improbability.
It’s not a bad idea to put a bird bath near a bird feeder; if there ends up being too much bird excrement in the water, you can move the bath elsewhere.
To ensure that birds will return to your yard, bird feeders should be installed before a bird bath.
Providing access to water, especially during dry spells or the heat of summer, is of the utmost importance. A fountain or other water feature is ideal.