When attracting birds to enjoy your garden it’s important to consider their safety. So:
- Try to position feed in open spaces, away from any potential hiding places for lurking cats or foxes.
- Be conscious of small spaces where the bird’s feet could get trapped or sharp edges that might injure them on bird tables or feeders.
- Good hygiene is an important for birds as it is for us! Make sure the dishes and feeders are kept clean to avoid the risk of infection
Bird tables and stations
A bird table or a bird station (pictured) is a great way to feed birds all year round. Choose a quiet, reasonably sheltered spot and the birds will quickly learn that this is a safe and convenient place to find food and visit regularly.
Bird tables have the advantage of giving extra shelter and are often aesthetically pleasing, and the birds can enjoy being in a safe place whilst feeding. Bird stations are convenient allowing you to offer a variety of foods and treats to attract different types of birds.
Nestboxes are a great way to attract more vulnerable birds who really need your help, such as house sparrows and starlings- the numbers of these birds have declined in the last few years. Nestboxes are great for small hole-nesting birds to nest in. A variety of birds use nestboxes and they can attract different species to your garden.
Position the nestbox so the birds have a clear line of flight to it, slightly down and to the north east to avoid the strongest sunlight and rain from getting into the box. The box can be fixed to a wall or tree, the height from the ground is up to you, as long as it is out of reach of inquisitive humans and any predators. If fixing to a tree, use something like old hose to attach to avoid any damage to the tree.
By choosing different nestboxes you can attract different birds and it’s a good idea to spread them out through your garden to avoid competition.