Read this article and have been listening to people discuss this often at weddings (as a wedding photographer and videographer) and around the net . . but . . prior to my current life, I was formerly an industrial scientist and therefore would like to give my 2 or 3 cents worth for the readers consideration.
Rice and Corn (since I read a response from an observer in DC) both fall naturally to the ground and turn dry on the plant in the field and birds eat them daily, hourly, and as this is being typed. The fact is, rice and corn are nothing more than seeds. Seeds one of the components of the diet of fowl both wet and dry; often dry in the fall and winter months.
The topic is a myth created and espoused by Ann Landers that I once read in a column and picked up by those people who often place the lives of animals over unborn children. The truth is these fowl love seeds and we use rice here to dry out cell phones and other electronic gadgets that somehow find their way into water . . hmmmmm . . that’s a problem, and the spent rice we feed to the birds and they love it and NONE fall dead in our yard, neighbors yard, or anywhere we can find in the neighborhood. Moreover, we have soaked rice for days and the size accomplished after swelling is hardly that large by comparison even after a week.
Hope this analogy helps. Oh and why don’t we eat the rice after the moisture grabbing experiment? Would you want to eat rice (even though cooked) after it had laid in a sealed bowl with a cell phone that had been dropped in a toilet? Hmmmm, we much prefer to let the lil birdies enjoy a good meal.