If you want to teach your kids about nature then introducing them to the birds in your backyard is a fantastic way to do it. The process of creating a bird-friendly environment is also a fun activity to enjoy as a family. Here’s how to get started.
Bird Feeders and Tables
Having bird food available is the first step to attracting our feathered friends. If there are likely to be cats roaming around then opt for a hanging bird feeder or a bird table. A really fun way to get going is to make one of these with your kids. By using unwanted household items they can learn something extra about recycling, too.
Once you have made the feeder you and your little ones can look for a good place to hang it. Try somewhere in view of a window so that you can watch the birds from inside the house. Also remember to have it high enough to be cat-proof.
Bird Food and Treats
Now you have your feeder or table set up the kids can enjoy adding food and waiting for the birds to appear. It’s important to feed wild birds the right things with bird seed mixtures being one of the healthiest options. Although bread is widely fed to birds it is not very good for them and should be avoided.
Another fun activity is to make bird cakes and food bars at home. A simple option is to mix raisins, peanuts and bird seed with suet. There are plenty of more adventurous options that birds will love too, including live worms. It’s good to refer to charity websites such as the American Bird Conservancy for further guidance.
Observing the Birds
Now all that’s left to do is enjoy your visitors. Buy a garden birds identification book so that your kids can keep track of which birds they have seen. A pair of binoculars can also add to your little ones’ enjoyment as they can take a closer look at the colors and observe the birds’ habits. Why not start a big garden bird hunt of your own and make a list of the birds before counting how many you see at different times of the day? Bird stickers can help with this process since you can put the stickers on a piece of paper and mark tallies beside the ones you see. Different seasons may attract different species, so you can repeat this exercise throughout the year in order to build up a log.
You’ll likely be impressed with the many different types of birds that visit your yard throughout the year. Introducing your kids to them is a great way to educate about nature and provide some fun and excitement at home.