For The Love of Birds!

Apr 15th, 2015 | By | Category: Spring 2015

As spring approaches and our windows open up, the sounds of birds will help us to forget about snow and look forward to spring. Here are some ideas you might want to try out with your children or grandchildren!

  • Bird Bath Made Easy: Take a plastic flower pot and turn it upside down. Take a plastic bowl big enough to cover the top of the pot and glue it on. Presto – an inexpensive bird bath!
  • Bird Sounds: Find a local birding book at the library and pick three or four of the most common birds in your area. Some books have accompanying CDs with bird sounds! Binoculars are a great help and fun to use!
  • Nesting Ball: Collect a variety of bits and pieces such as yarn, ribbon, string, lint from the clothes dryer – anything a bird could use to create a nest. Place all the items in a mesh onion bag and hang it where your children can see it and birds will have access. If you use very colourful items you may see them reappear in a bird’s nest.
  • Caring For Birds: Set up a bird bath or birdhouses and feeding trays that can be kept stocked with seeds all year round in your backyard or on your balcony. Perhaps you can build a bird feeder together? Who comes to the feeder? Keep watch since this will also be an opportunity to see how often squirrels “steal” the bird’s food, not to mention night time visitors like racoons! Robert Bateman’s book on Backyard Birds is spectacular!
  • Gourd Nests: Gourds can be used to create bird nests by cutting them in half and filling them with bird seed or carving out windows and doors and placing bird seed inside. Hang these creations in a spot where your children or grandchildren can see what happens.
  • Bird Feathers: It is not unusual to find bird feathers. Try matching the feathers to the bird they belong to. Examine feathers carefully and gently pull part the web of the feather. Look for tiny barbules that project from the barbs. Use magnifying glasses to help. Feathers also insulate and waterproof a bird’s body. Find out more!
  • Bird Food Tree: Create a food tree for the birds – hang from the branches popcorn, cranberries, dried fruits, pretzels, pinecones covered in peanut butter (not in summer, the peanut butter can spoil and make the birds sick) and rolled in seeds.
  • Bird Ring: A simple idea for little hands is to take a toilet paper roll, coat it with peanut butter and roll it in bird seed. The roll can then be threaded on a tree branch. (Again, not in summer, the peanut butter can spoil and make the birds sick.)
  • Food Wreath: Take a Bundt cake pan (they come in all kinds of sizes) and give it a spray with oil. Fill with bird seed or items such as cereal, dried fruit, etc., and pour in water just to cover the ingredients. Place in the freezer and when it is solid, pop it out, tie on a ribbon and hang it from a tree close to a window where you can watch the birds.

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