If you’re into birds, then you’re happy our beautiful avian friends are once again decorating your backyard with pops of color.
But the fanfare of attracting different bird species to your backyard feeders also entails responsibilities as the keeper of your backyard flock.
And our backyard guests change every day. Some are here for the rest of the summer and others, it’s just a short visit.
I keep tabs of what people are seeing across the country over Instagram and like clockwork, once I saw a photo of an Indigo Bunting posted, a few days later one showed up in the yard.
Instagram has become the Birder’s Photo Almanac for what’s coming your way.
People remark on Instagram and send us questions on our website and ask us how to attract a specific bird to their yard.
After posting a photo of Cooper’s Hawk near our feeders, a woman asked how I attracted that type of hawk in our yard.
My reply: we feed the songbirds.
Here are a few tips to keeps in mind to keep attracting birds to your backyard to keep the birds happy, healthy, safe and coming back regularly to your backyard bird sanctuary.
-Keep bird baths clean.
Birds will use a bird bath to bathe, and others will come to drink. So, will other wildlife friends like chipmunks and squirrels. And they will use the water for other “things” and leave the water undrinkable.
So, it’s important to be sure the water is safe for birds to drink.
We empty our bird bath twice a day to keep the water clean. Be sure to check if the bottom is slimy, and clean it out with a paper towel.
-Place feeders with the bird’s safety in mind.
It’s estimated that 100,000,000 birds die in window collisions in the U.S. each year.
That’s an astounding number only worthy of being in one’s bank account.
To limit the risk of window collisions, place feeders less than 3 feet from windows or more than 10 feet away. Birds may still bump into the window occasionally, but they’re far less likely to be injured.
Place your feeders right on your window (suction cup feeder) or beside your window to get the best possible views of birds and to protect their safety.
-Avoid dry Nyjer seeds.
All Nyjer seeds are not the same. Examine the seeds before purchasing and if it looks dull, or if they are too many brown seeds mixed in, avoid at all costs.
Look for shiny black seeds. They retain the oils that keep finches, Chickadees, Pine siskin, Redpoll well-nourished and coming back for more much to your delight.
We recommend Wagner’s 20-pound bag of nyjer seed from Amazon. One 20-pound bag contains 150,000 seeds per pound creating many visits to the feeder of your favorite backyard birds. Best of all, we love that it’s delivered to our door and makes it very easy to stay stocked all summer.
-Clean bird feeders regularly.
Cleaning your bird feeders keeps your backyard birds healthy and avoid spreading diseases.
Moldy seeds and bird droppings create a very unhealthy environment.
We prefer to clean our feeders once a month using a stiff brush and hot, soapy water.
During times of peak feeding activity, such as the migration season, you’ll need to clean it more often.
Many of our bird feeders are Droll Yankees feeders or Harvest Seed Supply Snack Stack Feeder, and they’re easy to take apart and clean.
Allow feeders to dry completely before refilling and putting it back up.
Remember, not all birds eat at the feeders, so keep the area under your feeder clean for those birds that feed on the ground.
-Keep your cat indoors.
Cats are excellent companions, but if you love birds and feeding them, then keep the felines indoors.
Studies prove the devastating impact that roaming house cats and feral cats have on
birds and small mammals.
According to veterinarians, indoor cats live longer, healthier lives, so keeping them inside protects the birds, and it’s also better for the cats.
Check back to read more about our backyard bird watching experience. And follow us on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook to track our progress.
Please share your photos with us using #intobirds, and we’ll feature them on our website.
And please reach out to us on our CONNECT page if you have tips you’d like to share with readers. We’d love to profile other backyard bird watchers.
Now get out and see birds!