Archive for the 'Birdbaths' Category

When it’s Just too Darn Hot for the Birdbath!


July 31, 2015
posted by birdhouse chick @ 10:13 pm

Natural texture birdbath but water is too warm Mr. Chipping sparrow needs to cool off, he enters the naturally textured birdbath with gentle slope as it’s quite enticing. But surprise! You reside in Atlanta where it’s hotter than Hades right now and the bath water isn’t just warm… it’s hot πŸ™

Not so refreshing… except for the gentle spray from the leaf mister above! Like the shoemaker’s daughter with worn shoes, our own mister at home is really old with a slight drip. But the drip is ideal over a birdbath as it keeps the water moving (no mosquitoes) and adds fresh, cool water on a slow and steady basis. Birds are absolutely wild for it! So much so, they sit and wait for the misters to start every morning, it’s like a virtual bird spa.

This mister is attached to an old metal… not sure what it is, but a simple plastic plant stake with twist-tie works great. Even the garden benefits with ease of mobility, moving the stake around to different sections each day. Gardens grow lush, and birds love taking leaf baths too!

mister placed above a large ground birdbath is ideal

goldfinch at mister above birdbath

When placed over a birdbath, leaf misters offer fresh and cool water for birds, butterflies and other wildlife. Activity is pretty amazing on warm summer days. Stagnant water is no fun for anyone when temperatures remain in the 90’s. Adding a water feature like a dripper, solar fountain or water wiggler to your birdbath will bring it to life, entice more birds, and keeps water fresher for longer periods of time.

The whole set-up is shown below and it’s simple to recreate. The misters come with everything to be up & running in minutes! With 50 feet of tubing, it attaches to the outdoor spigot, complete with Y-valve that keeps garden hose free for use. Extra tubing is optional, and we can promise (from personal experience) birds LOVE these things!

Leaf mister and birdbath simple set-up

Great Birdbath Accessories to Entice Feathered Friends


November 15, 2014
posted by birdhouse chick @ 6:01 pm

Add a fountain to your hanging birdbathGift idea # 4o: Make it Move

What happened to the other 3 gift ideas? We were busy getting our own baths and bird habitat ready for the coming polar vortex! Out with the water wigglers and drippers- in with the heaters.

Without a doubt, the easiest way to attract more birds is with fresh water. Even a plant saucer with an inch or two of water near shrubs or a tree line serves friendly fliers and other wildlife well throughout the year. If you have an existing birdbath, or know someone who loves bird watching- it’s easy to understand the sheer joy of seeing birds bathe and wade, or preen and drink from the life-essential offering.

Accessories like misters, fountains or drippers really bring a birdbath to life with the gentle motion of moving water. During the season, hummingbirds can be seen flitting about a moving stream of water. Butterflies adore leaf misters plus gardens grow lush below them. Even songbirds quickly become trained awaiting the start of birdbath action each morning!birdbath accessories like drippers entice more birds

You can quickly craft your own simple dripper from a milk jug! Take said plastic 1-gallon milk jug and poke a tiny pin hole in the bottom corner. Use a chain or strong wire to hang the jug above your birdbath. At one small drop every 3 or 4 seconds, the gallon of water will last at least a few days. There will definitely be increased activity that’s well worth the effort… for you and birds alike!

Should you be pondering the perfect holiday gift (without breaking the bank) for the nature lover on your list, a leaf mister or even mister-dripper combo will bring great joy… and for many seasons to come!

Bring an Ordinary Hanging Bird Bath to Life with Solar


July 8, 2014
posted by birdhouse chick @ 11:52 am

A solar bubbler makes an ordinary hanging bird bath extraordinary!

July can be a scorcher for wildlife, especially with recent droughts and above-average temperatures. Natural water sources like puddles, creeks and shallow pools all but disappear during summer heat. Adding fresh water to the garden may prove to be a life saver for birds and other animals whose habitat continues to shrink. Something as simple as a plant saucer filled with water will see winged visitors happily partaking in the essential life source.

Adding bath accessories like leaf misters, water wigglers, or this solar bubbler can bring a pedestal or hanging bird bath to life! Circulating water stays fresher longer and acts as a magnet for birds! They’re totally attracted by the visual of moving water, and the soothing sounds can be a welcomed addition to human ears as well.

No need for the whole set-up either, these battery or solar powered accessories are a la carte! Some even operate from the outdoor spigot. Add them to your existing bath for a whole new dimension in birding. Hummingbirds are especially fond of birdbath fountains, while butterflies covet the gentle spray of leaf misters. Songbirds around our place actually sit and wait for the drppers to start each morning, it’s looks like a bird spa!

Consider one of many “moving water” accessories this summer and see which new visitors show up at your place. Especially during spring and fall migrations, you may be quite surprised!

 

The Deal with Stones in Your Birdbath


June 28, 2014
posted by birdhouse chick @ 3:41 am

Adding stones to your birdbath may save a life.You hear it all the time… or maybe not? Adding a large rock or stones to your birdbath helps birds. It’s absolutely true, especially for juveniles venturing out into the world after springs’ nesting season.

Shallow, shallow, shallow is best, with a maximum depth of 2-3 inches. If your bowl is deeper – just don’t fill it all the way. While adult birds tend to maneuver with more agility, babies can easily drown in your birdbath if the water is too deep.

A recent post on this topic (on a social network) was shared far and wide because it was a good story. The person saw the bathing bird in distress, and slowly walked over with a stick, but the bird didn’t fly away – it remained in the bath struggling. When she gently extended the stick over the bath, the bird hopped right on it. After placing the stick to the ground, the bird hopped off… but could not fly. She immediatelyThe most shallow birdbaths will accommodate rocks to help feathered friends thought of a wildlife re-habber and called, but the bird eventually took flight.

Drowning indeed he was, the water being too deep, with the sides of the bath too tall and steep for escape. The little guy was lucky someone was watching! Wet feathers can’t fly, this is why he hopped under the brush instead of flying to a nearby branch. It illustrates exactly why folks are always saying to put rocks or stones in your birdbath.

Gentle sloped sides on this birdbath make it easy for birds to walk right outBaths with a gentle slope or walk-in sides are easiest on birds because they imitate shallow pools or puddles found in nature. Texture is always helpful too, as it allows tiny feet the ability to grip.

The stones can be anything from colorful decorative ones, to a large natural rock, river rock, lava rock, or simply stones from the garden. Anything that allows birds to “hop up onto” will be used and appreciated by feathered friends. For better footing, landing and perching spots… and maybe even to save a life!

The Neighbor’s Cat and Ground Bird Baths


May 30, 2014
posted by birdhouse chick @ 3:07 am

bird bathsThe Rocky Mountain ground bath with dripper is pretty cool, birds actually sit and wait for it to start in the morning… but it no longer sits on the ground due to man-made predators πŸ™

One of the oldest and most intense arguments… cats vs. birds and there’s basically two sides; birders and the people they refer to as “cat crazies”- those who let their cats roam because they believe it’s good for them. Ferals who roam are a problem for birds (but that stems from human ignorance too). Still, there are birders who are responsible cat owners and keep their feline friends indoors. We fit this category – four cats, whose outdoor time consists of a screened porch, and they’re pretty happy with the arrangement.

The neighbor “rescues” cats from the shelter, but they stay outdoors for the most part, which drives me bonkers! At times it’s infuriating, heated words have been exchanged on several occasions. The husband says “just shoot the cat”, but truth be told, I’d rather shoot the wife because it’s not the cats’ fault! Suggesting the cat sport a collar with a bell worked, but it really doesn’t help the birds too much.

bird bathsA couple of cool ground bird baths are always in use around our yard, but they’re not on the ground anymore! This stinks because birds tend to bathe more naturally at this level. Enter tree stumps, large planters, small tables, and anything else that will add height to the bird baths. An excuse to add yet another, hanging style too.

The dripper birdbath now sitsΒ  atop of a large planter, the big wood textured bird bath will look good on a tree stump, and the birds will definitely adjust in a day or two at most. Would’ve much rather kept things status quo, but it’s really not fair to the birds. Their lives needn’t be compromised due to the neighbor’s stupidity! And hey… one more hanging bath to maintain won’t make a big difference in the scheme of things… especially since we’re already known in the neighborhood as the crazy bird people πŸ™‚bird baths

Unique Birdbath & Planter Set Creates a Mini-Oasis


May 4, 2014
posted by birdhouse chick @ 3:21 am

birdbath & planterSongbirds can be attracted to the smallest of spaces… with the right stuff! Elements found in nature are always best for birds; plantings that produce a food source and fresh water, they just can’t be beat when it comes to helping wild birds thrive.

Our hand made birdbath & planter lets you combine those elements in a stunning fashion. Whether your yard is monstrous or miniscule, you can create a one-stop oasis by planting for the birds and offering a fresh water source in one. Equally suited for deck, patio, or balcony, it’s ingenious!

Nectar producing flowers like petunias, lantana, salvia, and impatience work perfectly in the generous planter bowl, and it’s very likely that hummingbirds and butterflies will frequent these flowers for a quick meal.

The bath itself is glazed inside which helps water stay cooler. Adding a few river rocks or decorative stone makes the pool even more inviting by offering easy spots to land and perch, especially for fledgelings and juveniles during spring. Adding them will also help trap sediments at the bottom of the bowl. But when temperatures really start to heat up, water should be changed every other day. Because that’s the trick… if you keep it fresh – they will come!

In brilliant blue, green or turquoise, this bath and planter set packs a big punch for a small space. Beautiful glazed pottery, colorful annuals, and vibrant birds of spring and summer! What gardener could ask for more?

Another birdbath set worth mentioning features a bee skep, although strictly decorative. The bath is actually hand painted, and the large pottery skep makes for unique garden sculpture.garden-bee-icon

Now, about that special Mother’s Day gift – there’s no way you forgot mom?

The Unintentional Bird Bath


April 13, 2014
posted by birdhouse chick @ 10:58 pm

Sump pump outlets can become natural bird baths for all seasonsLast winter a water problem was discovered in the crawlspace. Ground water was coming up pretty high and slowly rotting out the support beams. First thought to be a lack of ventilation – but it turns out this had been a longstanding problem.

Over the summer a sump pit was dug, a pump and float switch added, and drain hose was run outside, across the side yard. A simple outlet was created with gravel. It pumped all winter long, even during snowy weather, and is pumping right now. The water pools around the gravel and ultimately sinks into the ground.

Flocks of resident birds gathered there all winter, particularly during really cold weather. While this is near the bird feeders, there were many birds (like robins) who don’t typically use them. Every time the pump ran, birds would swoop down and take a dip, or drink, and otherwise frolic in the temporary pond. Leaning towards burying a bird bath or some kind of large shallow form near there for summer so the water will be able to pool longer.

This is clean, filtered ground water, it flows so it doesn’t freeze, and will be cooler in summer months. The best thing… it’s going to good use for the birds!

New Years Note for One of Our Bird Baths Ends 2013 Nicely


December 31, 2013
posted by birdhouse chick @ 9:21 pm

A happy New Years Note for One of our Donated Bird Baths

On the last day of 2013 it was nice to receive this note via snail mail. It was a thank you which stemmed from a resident’s simple request for a birdbath to attract some birds at the nursing home. We sent along one of the hanging bird baths, a couple of suet cakes with cages, and some easy suet recipes in hopes the kitchen staff might humor the residents – and help feed the birds on a tiny budget!

A post was published hoping some other birding businesses might catch wind of the simple request. A couple of benches would’ve been really nice for the folks to sit outside and enjoy the birds, but that was beyond our realm. It was just good to give, expecting nothing in return, and we managed a good bit of that for 2013, and will continue to do so in the new year!

Yes, 2013 had its ups and downs, from Fiscal Cliffs and natural disasters, to super storms, a never-ending winter, and government shut-downs. The Monarch migration was a bust, and bats and bees continue to perish at alarming rates. That last part may not sound very important… but just ask a farmer who grows crops. Without these pollinators the future could be grim.

So, Welcome 2014!
May winter be swift, for early nest starts and spring bulbs forcing through, for a safe and timely return of hummingbirds and all migratory birds, for a new awareness and stewardship of the nature around us, and for many happy & healthy fledges for all our feathered friends!

Oh yeah.. and here’s that nice note πŸ™‚Happy New Year and lovely note for a donated birdbath

Cool Pint-Sized Bird Baths


July 8, 2013
posted by birdhouse chick @ 12:55 am

Even the smallest of bird baths entice feathered friends provided water is kept freshThere’s really only one rule when it comes to enticing birds with water… keeping it fresh!

Bird Baths of all sizes and shapes are known to attract and keep birds coming back, in fact it’s the easiest way to attract them. Although depth is also important (optimal is 2-3 inches) a large rock may always be placed in the bath for safe perching should the bowl be deeper. And there’s absolutely no rule that says you must fill it to the top! Especially in summer, when lots of fledgelings are around, shallow bird baths are safest for all.

This mini-bath is a fun way to offer fresh water because it has lots of perching spots. Vibrant stained glass (in six designs) catches light beautifully, and best of all, it can be used as feeder in winter months. Is it too small for a bath? Nope… we’ve seen titmice and chickadees drinking from ant moats!

When used as a dish feeder, these mini-baths will accommodate a great variety of treats too. Seed mixes, suet & nuggets, shelled or whole peanuts, fruit, even mealworms if you’re so inclined!

Shown in the bluebird style, there’s a hummingbird, butterfly, lady bug, dragonfly and bumble bee too. Each in vibrant stained glass and copper, these pint-sized bird baths are excellent for small spaces like on the deck, patio… or even the apartment balcony!

speaking of unusual bird baths


May 19, 2013
posted by birdhouse chick @ 9:04 pm

unusual teak bird baths may be set on the ground, deck, or raised using a planter or metal baseBold colors in the landscape can be lovely, be it flowers, statuary, or even a vibrant birdbath. But some gardens may better lend themselves to a more natural style, maybe a soothing zen-like appearance. These results are best achieved when using materials found in nature to create the space.

These most unusual teak bird baths fit the bill perfectly when more quiet surroundings are desired. Available in small or large, they may be placed directly on the ground, deck or patio, or raised using a nice planter or iron stand. Birds do tend to bathe more naturally at ground level, but you can bet that fresh water is always welcome at any level.

Teak you say? Yes! It’s one of the most dense and durable woods available. You know that fine teak patio furniture (that costs a fortune) it’s made for outside and to withstand the elements. Made from reclaimed teak, these bird baths are sanded and polished to further protect them over the years. They’re beautiful in the landscape and no two baths are exactly the same. The generous thickness of the bowl and texture offers birds good footing and lots of perching spots too.

Although some of these bird baths are 5 to 7 inches tall, we recommend a water depth of just 2 to 3 inches for bird’s safety… especially this time of year when lots of babies start fledging the nest!