Do you have a favorite diner? Maybe you just love grandma’s home cooking. All of us have a favorite dish. Well if you’re a bird, native flowers, berries and seeds are the best meal available and your backyard can be their favorite place to stop in to dine.
Did you know that more than 150 bird species recognize when a berry is ripe on the vine? Birds and plants (especially native plants) have a very symbiotic relationship. The plants feed the birds and the birds help spread the plant’s seed so that they can flourish.
Hummingbirds love the nectar of a sweet flower and they spread pollen, helping the flowers to multiply.
Regardless of where you live, all the plants in your garden attract insects, which is more good news for the birds. Birds love to feed insects to their young, and native plants offer caterpillars which is a particularly favorite of momma birds everywhere.
And what about after dinner? After a good meal, the birds rely on plants to provide them with nest-building material.
If you want to attract birds to your backyard, plant native plants from your region and try to offer our avian friends a good mix of both berry and seed bearing plants.
And don’t forget the shrubs and even trees. Oaks, maples, ashes and other trees attract birds because the trees’ branches offer shelter and safety. Birds also use shrubbery for cover.
Depending on where you live, if it’s in North America, plants such as lupines, sunflowers, brown-eyed sisals, Black-eyed Susans and fire wheel are some well-known favorites.
You know which bird loves a good backyard garden? The ever-present jay. Next week, I’ll talk about one jay that is absolutely steller.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this episode of Avian Beauty. Thanks for listening. Be sure to visit avianbeauty.com for more bird inspiration and information and please consider subscribing (for free) to our blog and podcast. I’m Scott Bourne. Happy birding.
Scott Bourne is an Olympus Visionary, a professional bird/wildlife photographer, author and lecturer who specializes in birds. He is a pioneer in digital photography and was named one of the “30 most influential photographers on the Web” by Huffington Post. His photographic experience spans four decades and his bird/wildlife images have been published in more than 200 magazines and periodicals. He is also a Signed Master at Studio of Masters in China.
Scott has been a founder, co-founder, advisor or early stage investor in several technology companies such as NetRadio, Photofocus, and ViewBug.