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How To Help Oklahoma Birds

Offer a Varied Menu. To attract the greatest variety of bird species, a feeding program should offer a variety of food. Sunflower, safflower and other types of seeds can attract sparrows, finches, dove and cardinals; suet can attract woodpeckers, wrens and nuthatches; fruits can attract mockingbirds and robins; and sugar water can attract hummingbirds and orioles in spring and summer. While a variety of food types can attract a broader range of species, many Oklahoma birds are content with simple black-oil sunflower seeds. Look for commercial mixes with a high percentage of sunflower seeds, or consider feeding straight sunflower seeds if you're new to bird feeding or looking for a low maintenance option. 

Stage Feeders at Multiple Levels. Presenting food items at different locations and levels in the yard may also attract a variety of bird visitors. Ground-feeding birds, like juncos and most sparrows, may prefer a platform feeder on or near the ground. Birds that typically feed in the canopy, like chickadees and titmice, will readily come to the rims and perches of feeders hanging several feet from the ground.

Providing Water

There is a tendency to overlook the importance of water but providing a source of water for drinking and bathing may attract a greater variety of species than any food offering. It is obvious that birds need water in warm weather, but it may be surprising that their need may be even greater in cold weather - to help them stay warm. Bird feathers contain interlocking webs known as barbules. When in place, these locking feathers shut out the cold and thereby provide proper insulation. It is essential for the feathers to be clean for this interlocking system to work properly so birds actually bathe more in the winter.

Provide an Escape. Birds typically fly back and forth from feeder to cover so that they’re less exposed to predators. Placing feeders about five feet from escape cover like brush piles, shrubs or trees can make visiting birds more comfortable.

Keep it Clean. Washing feeders in a one-part bleach to nine-parts water solution two to three times a year can help keep your feeding station clean. Rotating feeding stations and cleaning the area under feeders with a rake or leaf blower can also help keep your feeding station open for business.

Attracting Birds to Your Backyard https://spark.adobe.com/page/FrV5C28NNSyTp/