With human activities and urbanization, the presence of birds is becoming increasingly rare. Not to mention the use of various pesticides or the winter which deprive them of their food source. However, having a bird in your garden has many advantages; not only do they contribute to the balance of the ecosystem, ridding you of a large number of insects in the process, but their evolution and their songs provoke a feeling of appeasement. Bringing these small animals into your garden is easy, as long as you provide them with their basic needs: food and shelter.
When it comes to feeding, you don’t even have to do anything, but rather avoid doing certain things. First of all, avoid using chemicals on your plants: the presence of small insects is a major food source for the birds, which will take care of getting rid of them. In the same idea, the more you plant, the more you will attract birds: plants and shrubs are sources of food, whether it is insects that come to linger or fruits and berries that the plant can produce.
You can also think of placing a small watering place for them to drink, such as a bowl or even a small basin, which will allow you to observe the show at bath time.
In winter, food sources become scarce, both in terms of insects and fruits; it can then be interesting to place seed mixtures in a feeder and grease balls specifically designed for this purpose, to allow the birds to withstand these difficult periods.
As far as shelter is concerned, nothing too complicated either: if you already have a good number of trees and shrubs, with a sufficient source of food nearby, the birds won’t look any further! They can easily form their nests in these natural shelters, using small twigs present in your garden or in the surrounding area. Also, don’t prune your shrubs too much; the more bushy shelters you provide, the easier it will be for birds to hide and protect themselves from predators, such as cats, who come and go in the garden and are one of the main sources of stress for small feathered animals. Providing them with a safe shelter that is difficult for larger animals to access is therefore an essential point if you want to turn your garden into a refuge for the animals of the sky.
Another solution is the installation of nesting boxes; these small wooden constructions, with various shapes and sizes, ranging from rather discreet nesting boxes to slightly larger ones that will allow you to easily observe the comings and goings of your new residents. Most nesting boxes can also be customized, which can make it a great activity to do alone or with your family, giving a unique character to your garden. In the same idea as having as many bushes as possible, nesting boxes usually have small openings, which allow birds, and only birds, to enter them, providing them with a safe shelter.
With these tips and a few minor modifications, you should be able to provide a safe and durable home for wild birds, and perhaps you’ll be lucky enough to see some young chicks in the spring!