8 ACTIONS TO PROTECT BIRDS WHERE YOU LIVE
- Reduce or eliminate pesticide and herbicide use. By using fewer chemicals in and around your home, you will help keep birds, pets and your family healthy.
- Plant native plants. Native flora provides birds with food in the form of fruit and seeds and is home to tasty invertebrates like bugs and spiders.
- Identify the non-native invasive plants in your region,and work to remove them from your yard. And don’t bring any new invasives into your backyard habitat. Invasives don’t host as many insects as natives do and can threaten healthy ecosystems.
- Attract hummingbirds with sugar water, made by combining four parts hot water to one part white sugar boiled for one to two minutes. Never use honey, artificial sweeteners, or food coloring. Clean feeders with a solution of one part white vinegar to four parts water once a week.
- Make your windows visible to birds to prevent collisions. Put up screens, close drapes and blinds when you leave the house or stick multiple decals on the outside of the glass (decals need to be 2 to 4 inches apart to be effective). A strip of Glad Wrap or Saran Wrap is effective when put on the outside of reflective windows and patio doors.
- Let your yard get a little messy. Leave snags for nesting places and stack downed limps to create brush pile which is a great source of cover for birds during bad weather.
- Close your blinds at night and turn off lights you aren’t using. Some birds use constellations to guide them on their annual migration and bright lights from windows and skylights can disrupt their seeing senses.
- Create or protect water sources in your yard. Birds need water to drink and bathe (just like we do). Be sure to keep birdbaths clean and change the water three times a week.
By the National Audubon Society