Backyard Birding


This article was written for Pet Guardian Angels of America by J.Hamburg


Photo by Pexels

How to Attract Birds to Your Backyard

Have you ever considered birdscaping your backyard to turn it into a bird-friendly paradise? No matter if you enjoy birdwatching and want to attract more species of birds to your yard or if you simply want to create a haven for birds where they can thrive, birdscaping benefits both you and our feathered friends.

When you add the right features to your backyard to attract birds, you get to enjoy watching them visit your yard. Watching them hop around or listening to their songs can brighten your day!

Changes to climates and the growth of urban areas mean that some species of birds struggle to find areas where they can eat, drink, and nest. However, the right features turn your backyard into a place where birds can comfortably live. Here’s how to turn your backyard into a place birds will want to visit.

Create natural shelters

Birds need areas where they can hide from predators and shelter from the weather. If they feel secure in your backyard, they will keep coming back. Some ways to create natural shelters throughout your yard is increasing the density of plants and by adding brush piles.

Another way to help birds feel safe is by adding roosting boxes. Roosting boxes aren’t intended for birds to nest in, but instead, shelter them during bad weather. You can insulate a roost box with mulch or with moss.

Add a variety of food

Adding different food sources to a variety of different feeders is a great way to attract a wide variety of birds to your yard. Visit to learn about different seeds and feeders.

Certain types of birds need specific types of food. While mixed bird seeds are a good starting point, there are other foods you can feed to birds. Birds like suet, nuts, fruit chunks, and nectar. You can also feed them kitchen scraps, but this could also attract other wild animals, such as raccoons.

Clean, moving water is great

Birds need clean water that they can drink and bathe in. Shallow birdbaths around your yard are one way to provide them with this resource, but you need to remember to regularly dump and change the water so that it doesn’t become contaminated.

Putting in a moving water source, such as a pond with a pump, is one way to ensure that birds have access to clean water. You still have to change the water on occasion, but not as frequently as you would with a birdbath.

Natural materials are recommended

Consider using raw or natural materials to build up your garden spaces instead of the artificial gardening materials that are available. Raw materials simulate a more natural environment for birds, therefore making them more likely to visit your garden.

In addition to using natural materials, stay away from using pesticides within your yard. While some people use these as a way to keep insects away, keep in mind that these chemicals are harmful to other wildlife, including birds. Try to find natural ways to keep pesky insects away.

Foliage throughout the yard

Adding a variety of foliage, including flowers, bushes, and trees, adds a pop of color throughout your yard and helps to establish a natural ecosystem. Birds and other animals will come to use the foliage for shelter, eating, and making nests.

Look for a variety of native plants that will provide food year-round. Birds enjoy berries, seeds, fruits, nuts, sap, and nectar. It is also important to remember that a variety of foliage attracts insects as well. Birds will come to collect insects to feed to their babies.

Add nesting sites

Nesting sites throughout your yard will encourage birds to raise their young in your yard. Birds need places where they feel their hatchlings will be kept safe from potential predators. Bird houses with specific size holes for certain species will provide safe nesting sites.

Most birds will use natural objects from around your yard, such as weeds or grass clippings, to create their nests. However, if you want to offer them different nesting material, you can also set out cotton, string, or pet fur for them to use.

Final thoughts

Attracting birds to your backyard doesn’t have to be challenging. Even small changes throughout your yard, such as adding water sources or providing a variety of food, will start to attract new birds to your yard.

Also, keep in mind that birds might be afraid of dogs and cats! If your backyard is regularly used by your pet, you might have a harder time attracting birds.