With millions of birds across the UK beginning their annual journey to their wintering grounds, many Britons may have noticed a spike in bird poop in their gardens.
Birds will continue to migrate south this month which means more gardeners may notice a deluge of unsightly bird droppings on their balconies and patios.
Luckily, patio expert Dave Downing has shared a simple hack on behalf of Patio Awnings 4 Less that can be used to easily remove bird droppings from paving stones and patios.
Dave suggested using a natural concoction of lemon juice, bicarbonate of soda and water to remove bird droppings.
Dave said: “Lemon juice, baking soda and water can be combined to form an exceptionally effective cleaning solution.
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“Lemon juice is acidic due to its citric acid content, in contrast with baking soda which is mildly alkaline.
“When combined, the two undergo an acid-base reaction, which produces carbon dioxide, gas, water and salt. This helps to break down and lift dirt, stains and residues.
“Baking soda also has a mildly abrasive texture, enough to dislodge and lift particles of bird droppings when mixed with lemon juice but not enough to damage the surface of patio or paving slabs.”
To make the solution, squeeze fresh lemon juice into a bowl and gradually add the baking soda to form a thick, consistent and spreadable paste.
Apply the paste directly onto the bird droppings, using a soft brush and let it sit for between 10-15 minutes.
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By allowing the paste to sit, the natural acidity of the lemon and the baking soda will “break down” and “loosen” the droppings making them easier to remove.
Once removed, gently scrub the area and rinse it with water to remove any excess residue.
Lemons can be found in most supermarkets and cost 30p each from Sainsbury’s. Stockwell & Co. Bicarbonate Of Soda costs 65p from Tesco.
While bird droppings may not seem like a big issue, they can leave stains on surfaces which can make outside spaces look unsightly.
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Bird poop also contains uric acid, which, on certain surfaces, can be corrosive and continuous exposure to this acid can lead to deterioration over time.
Dave added: “Droppings also harbour bacteria, parasites and fungi – all of which can pose a direct health risk to humans.
“We recommend regular inspection and cleaning of your patio. Use gentle cleaning solutions, and consider protective covers for patio furniture and awnings when not in use. Visual and sound-based bird deterrents are also useful.”
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