With over 10,000 species, wild birds are so common that we often glance at them without second thought. When you really observe them and enjoy their beauty, you can truly appreciate these amazing creatures!
Using Wild Bird Feeders to Study Birds
To study wild birds, add some wild bird feeders to your yard. You can buy bird feeders to hang, pole mount or window mount your bird feeders. Once the wild birds realize the bird seed feeders are there, they will flock to your yard, allowing you to study the birds as they eat at your bird feeders.
Complement Your Wild Bird Feeders
Don’t forget about a bird bath and bird house to complement your wild bird feeders for your yard! Adding water and shelter only enhance your yard’s attraction for birds.
The male and female American Robin look very much alike, however males usually have the trademark deep orange breast and a dark head, while females are a duller shade of orange and have a paler head.
Found in most areas of North America except the American Southwest, the American Goldfinch has an amazing, daring courtship ritual as the male circles the female in midflight. Use special wild bird feeders known as finch feeders for these little birds.
Black Capped Chickadee
This small bird, known for its black crown or “cap” on its head, can be found across the southern two-thirds of Canada and northern two-thirds of the United States. It is popular at wild bird feeders.
A very vocal songbird, both the male and female Blue Jays have the same appearance. With outer feathers and crest on its head having shades of bright blue, this bird definitely stands out at wild bird feeders.
Brown Headed Cowbird
The female does not build her own nest. Instead, she waits until another bird temporarily leaves its nest of eggs, then she places her eggs in the nest with the other eggs and lets the unwitting bird raise them as her own!
The Common Grackle lets ants crawl up its body, most likely to eat any parasites that are clinging to its body. If it cannot find ants, it will use other items for the purpose. Commonly found at wild bird feeders.
Dark Eyed Junco
Each of the five kinds of Dark-Eyed Juncos reside in forests or woodlands throughout its habitat. They all have some common traits and similarities. Often found at wild bird feeders in the winter.
The Downy Woodpecker is the smallest and most prevalent woodpecker in North America. It has a white body with black and white feathers on its back and tail.
As its name implies, this species is not indigenous to North America. They have only been here for a little over a hundred years, yet they are now one of the most abundant birds in North America.
The Evening Grosbeak is actually a large finch, something many people don’t realize! During the winter, the male Evening Grosbeak’s brightly colored feathers make it easy to see at wild bird feeders.
Amazingly, there are more than 17 subspecies of the Hairy Woodpecker, living at many different elevations and habitat areas, although most prefer a wooded area or place where trees are abundant.
The House Finch will nest in bird houses and bird boxes, but if you look closely at a hanging basket in a backyard or on a porch, you may even find this little finch inhabiting it!
What we tend to call the Sparrow is actually the House Sparrow. This unique bird can swim if necessary, and it loves to take “dust baths,” just “splashing” about in the dirt! It can be found at wild bird feeders, especially in winter.
Having perhaps the widest range of any bird in the Western Hemisphere, the House Wren’s range stretches from Canada, southward through the United States and Mexico, reaching all of South America.
The Mourning Dove is well known for its soft cooing song. Still found in great numbers throughout their habitat, they are often hunted as game birds. You may find them on the ground under wild bird feeders.
As she sits on the nest, the female Northern Cardinal sings, perhaps communicating to the male about the need for more food for the hatchlings or about dangers lurking nearby. They stand out at wild bird feeders, especially in winter snows.
The Northern Mockingbird can be very aggressive in defending its territory, attacking both animals and humans if it feels its area is being invaded. It loves insects but will also dine at wild bird feeders.
With their stunning rainbow of plumage, the Painted Bunting is a bird you’ll never forget once you see it in real life.
This tiny brown finch can be found in central Alaska, the lower regions of Canada, throughout the United States and Mexico. During winter months, Pine Siskins often gather in large flocks. These birds will feast at wild bird feeders, especially finch feeders.
The Purple Finch can be found throughout Canada and the eastern half and Pacific coastal areas of the United States, spending its winters close to the Mexican border. It is often found at wild bird feeders.
Red Breasted Nuthatch
Red-Breasted Nuthatches have an unusual ability – they can climb down trees headfirst and move across branches clinging to the underside of the branches! Though they prefer insects, they will gladly dine at wild bird feeders.
Red Winged Blackbird
Red-Winged Blackbirds will nest in large colonies, often numbering in the thousands. Male Red-Winged Blackbirds have up to 15 females in its territory, although most have up to 5. Its menu includes insects and seeds, so it can be found at wild bird feeders.
The Song Sparrow is found throughout North America. Although the male and female Song Sparrows in a region look alike, its looks differ from region to region varying in both coloring and size. Often found at wild bird feeders, it also eats insects and fruits.
A bird feeder favorite in the Eastern U.S., the Tufted Titmouse is known for its perky behavior around feeders. Often it will zip down to a feeder, grab a sunflower seed and flitter back to a favorite branch to crack open its prize.
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