Sunday, December 23, 2007

Check Your Sunflower Seed

When you buy your black-oil sunflower seed from a reputable wild bird supply store, you are usually assured of getting a good quality product, clean and free of noxious weed seeds and other contaminants. Your small shop owner depends on your return business and your recommendations to bird-feeding friends to stay open, so s/he is careful when choosing what suppliers to buy from. I might see the occasional grain of corn or striped sunflower seed, but in general, I am very happy with the black-oil seeds I get from my local store.

Even the best manufacturers sometimes have a problem with their source for sunflower seeds, and weed seeds may slip into the mix. The thing I most hate to find in my sunflower is this:

The seeds of Field Bindweed, also called Wild Morning Glory.

As far as I can tell, nothing eats this seed, so it ends up in your yard, infesting your flower beds and getting tangled in your shrubs and bushes. I try to be alert and pluck out any bindweed seeds I find, as a preemptive strike.

Edit, 12/23, 6pm: OOPS!! Donald tells me I have mislabeled the white seeds. They are not bad bindweed seeds, they are plain old soybeans. I plead ignorance. Somebody once told me they were bindweed, and I believed them. Thanks for the correction!


donaldthebirder said...

The big white things are soybeans. I find corn and soy mostly mixed in with the seed. I don't find too much other stuff.

Kathy said...

The California quail that flock to my yard seem to eat anything I put out for them, so hopefully if I get any nasty seeds in my sunflowers they will eat them. My quail only have to hide from hunters for one more month, then are home free except for watching out for hawks and cats.

Julie Zickefoose said...

I looked at those seeds, and I thought, dang. Field bindweed seeds sure look like soybeans. :-0
That's how much I trust you.

A good Science Chimp loves to be corrected. We just need to get it right!!