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This tip is "for the birds" in your garden. I don't throw away large sticks that fall during storms, instead I keep them and use them to make stick sculptures for the birds. They add whimsy to my garden and the birds "love" to land on them because after all they are sticks from real trees. I started with a plain garden hook and just attached the sticks as I found them and it's an ever changing sculpture. You can add birdhouses or anything you want to, but I guarantee you that the birds will land on it and land on it "often!
My neighbor came to my garden and said, "What's that?" and I told her it's my stick sculpture for the birds. She loved it and went right home and made her own! Have fun with it! I used either twist ties to adhere the large sticks or those plastic bands you use to secure things that never come lose unless you cut them. After that I just intertwined sticks randomly and securely.
I also have a bird station with many feeders on it. I added sticks to it and the birds really loved that too. The birds can land as high as the stick is. It seemed to make them feel safer about landing on the feeding stations. It might look crazy but the birds seem to think it looks like a place they want to land and spend time on. For more whimsy I added some extra items within the sticks. You can hang sparkly jewels if that's your preference or just leave it natural like you are up in the woods. All types of birds land on my stick sculptures including the woodpeckers.
So remember, when you see a large stick in the road or in your yard, pick it up, there is a bird out there would love to land on that very stick if you place it high enough. Best of all sticks are free and constantly available. I love the birds and they love my crazy garden and all the "stick sculptures" I have made for them.
On one stick sculpture I have added an old broken trellis and am going to grow a vine on it, it will look even more natural and fun.
By Jeanasina from Richfield, MN
Before cleaning a greasy frying pan, wipe it out with a slice or two of bread. Feed the bread to the birds in your yard. Birds flock to this treat, which is a good source of nutrition for them and makes washing the greasy pan easier.
Source: Birds and Blooms magazine (April/May 2003)
By Cinnamon from Williams Lake, B.C.
For the winter months, I take the birdbath bowl off the pedestal and place it on the ground near the bird feeder, just outside my kitchen window. With the bowl on the ground, it's easier for me to empty the water and keep the bowl clean without the use of the water hose.
I get so much pleasure watching them from my kitchen window. I keep a pair of binoculars handy and can see their eyes and markings up close. I love watching them splash in the water. It puts a big smile on my face.
To those who put their scraps of yarn and threads in a tissue box to be thrown away, please just set it outside for birds to build their nest with. They will love it. Who knows what kind of a colorful nest they will build.
By George from Roanoke, VA
If you have bird feeders and like to attract goldfinches here's a cheap way to do it. No need to buy special seeds! Just sort out some sunflower seeds from the mixed seed or keep a handful from a bag of sunflower seed. Store over winter in a cool, dry, dark place. Plant them after the ground warms up where they can be seen from you windows.
Some of these will grow to be what everyone expects a sunflower to look like, tall with a single seed bearing head. These will probably be eaten by squirrels. Many of the other seeds, however, will branch out everywhere and produce many small heads. The smaller heads produce smaller seeds that squirrels aren't interested in. The goldfinches love the smaller heads. We had just one of the seeds grow in a bush shape and it produced many, many heads. How many? I stopped counting at 300! We often let some volunteer sunflowers grow in the flower beds where they simply dropped from the feeders.
By Janice from Cleveland, OH
If you want birds to land on your statuary for a cute photo, just find a statue (such as the fairy statue in my photo) that has an area of some kind where you can put your outdoor birds favorite birdseed within the statue itself and then wait for the birds to find it.
Many birds love salt blocks. Just make sure it's off the ground and something is under it so you don't kill plants underneath.
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Tips for attracting wild birds. Post your ideas.
If you want to entice thrushes and orioles and keep them around to watch, try feeding them small bites of fruit served in an old grape fruit half. My dad used to do this in the 1930's and claimed it worked for many birds in the Atlanta area, Washington DC area, just about any place he lived. Enjoy the birds while you pick your vegetables.
If anyone knows where I can buy some magpie bird food in Utah please tell me.