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Feed the birds

June 10, 2020

BirdsWatching birds’ flit about and tweet to each other makes for a restful and entertaining pastime. Making time to enjoy their (often amusing) antics is a fun way to connect with nature, feel centred, and breathe fresh air. You can attract these flighty entertainers to your slice of paradise by providing the right food and water.

Safety first
If you want to attract native birds to your backyard, ensure that the environment is safe for them.

• Set traps to control introduced predators like rats, stoats, and possums.
• Position bird feeding stations out of reach of introduced predators.
• Keep your cat inside whenever possible, especially at night.
• Clean your bird feeder regularly to avoid spreading disease.
• Provide water alongside the food so your bird friends can hydrate.

What to feed birds
Birds will find their way to your outdoor area if you provide them with food and water. Birds with a sweet tooth like the Bellbird enjoy both fruit and nectar. Bees like nectar as well, so purchase a bee-safe feeder to avoid the spread of bee disease. Cut any fruit in half for easy access and keep an eye out for fruit-loving Kererū and Tui. Avoid feeding native birds seeds, grains, bread, milk, honey, or cooked oats.

A bird playground
Fill your outdoor area with native plants to create the ideal environment for native birds, not to mention a stunning looking backyard! Rake fallen leaves, twigs, and other organic matter into small piles around your garden to boost the insect population over winter. These insects make for tasty snacks for native birds – most of which are insectivorous. To top the playground off, a birdbath will keep the birds happy and provide you with plenty of entertainment!

Photo by Grayson Smith on Unsplash