Many birds pass through southeast Kansas during times of migration. Wouldn’t it be great to have those birds reside in your yard permanently? Bird watching is a fun and relaxing hobby, especially if it’s in your own yard. If you like the idea of attracting different species of birds to your landscape, it is essential to provide them the basics: water, food, shelter and a place to perch and nest. Here are five things you can do to make your yard more bird friendly.

  1. Incorporate a water feature into your landscape to provide birds a water source.
  2. Use native plants in your yard. Birds are drawn to the plants they are familiar with when picking a place to reside permanently.
  3. Layer landscape beds with different types of plants to provide a place for refuge and shelter. Try putting tall grasses along the back border, a layer of flowering shrubs, a layer of perennial flowers and then some annual flowers. A small ornamental tree or two also adds a place for birds to perch and nest.
  4. Keep a constant source of food in your yard. Flowering plants provide nectar and attract insects for birds to eat. Shrubs and small trees that have berries or nuts provide food during fall and winter. However, when temperatures drop and the ground is covered during winter, it is important to provide an extra source of nutrition in the form of bird seed.
  5. Leave your garden un-kept through the fall and winter. The seeds provide a rich source of nutrition for the birds when other food sources are limited and twigs and leaves serve as nest-building material.

Keep in mind that your entire yard doesn’t need to be designed to attract birds. Having a single designated area or bed should serve the purpose of inviting different species of birds to your home.

Photo By Frank Wallace