Did you know that there’s a variety of garden birds that roam around our cities? The most common birds are the Maya, the Euronesian sparrow that we can find almost anywhere in the Philippines; and the Bato-bato, or what is also called a zebra dove for its dove-like appearance and gray and white colors. But if you’re lucky and pay close attention, you might also catch a glimpse of the Philippine pygmy woodpecker, barbets, sunbirds, Yellow-vented bulbuls, shrikes, black-naped orioles, crows, and even herons.
To catch a glimpse of them, here are some pointers on what to do and what to avoid!
1. Provide clean and fresh water
Putting out a clean water source for drinking and bathing is one of the most enticing things you can leave out for our feathered friends. A bowl or basin with about 2 inches of water would be enough. It’s best to put this under a shade but in an open and high area where they can have a view of incoming predators.
It’s also important to regularly clean the bowl and replace the water inside to make sure that there are no bacterias and other animal or insect matter present. To address this, sometimes it’s better if it has running water. There are solar-powered fountains available online which might help!
2. Leave out some bird seeds
Garden birds are not picky and would eat off the ground but it’s best to place bird feeders to make sure they’re a bit elevated. This is one of the best ways to entice birds to come into your garden. Don’t be disheartened when you don’t see any birds eating off of your feeders as it might take a while before they realize that it is a food source. Birds don’t have a well-developed sense of smell and the seeds have a faint smell that is dissolved quickly in the open.
When choosing a spot for our feeders, make sure it’s away from predators like dogs and cats who might mistake the birds for prey or toys. Keeping them away from areas with regular loud music or a lot of movement would also help make the birds feel safe enough to wander around the feeder.
3. Have a space to nest
Give the fed garden birds a place to relax by building boxes or nesting areas. This may easily be from dead wood or bushy trees. Make sure that your garden is also sufficiently bright. Sunlight emphasizes the diversity of trees and plants that invite birds into your yard.