GIMME SHELTER - ATTRACTING FINE FEATHERED FRIENDS - PART 2
In Part 1, we learned about birdfeeders, water and feed. Now we'll explore how to make your backyard welcoming if you'd like to observe a bird family grow up.
There are practically as many types of nesting boxes (bird houses) as there are species of birds. A thoughtfully chosen and placed box can provide a nursery for birds who may not be able to find a nesting hole in a tree. To learn about style preferences by species and proper location, visit the Cornell Lab of Ornithology website. This site also has birdhouse construction plans as well as suggestions to keep your visitors safe from invaders such as squirrels or raccoons. Additionally, the National Bird-Feeding Society has some ideas on how to protect against the biggest threat that birds face, which is pet cats.
A few landscaping strategies can provide shelter, hiding places and a natural food supply. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has lots of tips for both existing and new landscaping and an article from the Denver Post explains the benefits of growing native plants to lure birds.
Backyard birding is a great way to instill a lifelong love and appreciation of nature for children. In Part 3, we'll explore ways to make it a fun and educational family experience.
Birds of Colorado: Field Guide by Stan Tekiela
National Geographical Field Guide to Birds - Colorado edited by Jonathan Alderfer
Rustic Birdhouses and Feeders by Colin McGhee
Birds in Your Backyard: A Bird Lover's Guide to Creating a Garden Sanctuary by Robert J. Dolezal