Bird watching is a fun, inexpensive activity for families. You can reserve a special space for bird feeders anywhere in your yard, and throughout the year watch the variety of birds that come to visit. Here some tips for feeding the birds:
*Buy inexpensive feeders; many are under $5.00, and the birds just love them. You can also make tray feeders out of scrap wood and place them on the ground. Get creative!
Try different things and see how the birds respond. Many will eat sunflower seeds placed in a hollowed out grapefruit placed on a nail head on your deck. This is a great "experiment" for the kids. They can record their findings in a notebook, and keep track of which birds show up during the different seasons.
*Place feeders near trees or bushes if possible, or anywhere that makes the birds feel sheltered. Do not place above your flower beds; the seed does sometimes sprout and can make a mess. Choose an area for the feeders that is specifically for that purpose; plant the flowers around it if you would like.
*The cheaper the bird seed, the more filler it has. But, if you have a lot of squirrels, chipmunks or Mourning Doves, they will clean it up and you will get a nice variety of birds. Buy according to your budget. Sunflower seeds and thistle will bring different song birds, and downy woodpeckers, but it is more expensive.
If you check grain elevators or farm supply stores; you can often find large bags at a good price. Just remember, you can throw out leftover bread, rolls, cereal, or even donuts and the birds will eat it. The kids and the birds are not picky.
Have fun, experiment, and let the kids learn about nature. Watching and listening to the birds is relaxing for adults, so the whole family benefits!
FunBook tips courtesy of FamilyCorner.com Magazine -- http://familycorner.com
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