Wednesday, May 19

Wild And Wonderful Bird Feeders

I've ventured into the dangerous and exotic world of bird feeding. Vancouver has a store that specializes in bird feeding and birding (the observation of wild birds in their habitats), The Backyard Bird Centre. I ended up coming away with a tube feeder, a bag of black oil sunflower seeds, and a hummingbird feeder.

The tube feeder was a pretty easy decision; in person, the metal ones looked a lot nicer. The fellow at the store recommended the sunflower seeds as the best all-around bird feed, but I think next time I'll get a mix. Apparently the small feeding holes of the bird feeder will discourage starlings, and mayybe sparrows; if I want to feed bigger birds, I can just attach a tray to the bottom of the bird feeder.

The hummingbird feeder was a more complicated choice. I bought this beautiful, simple feeder. However, I was told that I should fill the container to the brim in order to keep it from dripping, as this causes a vacuum. As I already knew, it's best to make hummingbird nectar at home; but you also have to change the nectar every 2-4 days, to keep it from going moldy. And then I read that it often takes a long time for hummingbirds to discover your feeder. Plus, the hummingbird feeder I got won't be so easy to clean--another crucial, frequent habit. So finally I ordered a smaller hummingbird feeder. I might introduce the larger feeder once hummingbirds are showing up.

Keep in mind that you don't need a garden or porch to be able to keep a bird feeder; if your windows open in a cooperative way, you can affix a bird feeder onto your window with suction cups, and get the best view possible.

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