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Birding in Colorado: From first attraction to sanctuary


July 20, 2017

Colorado, the colorful state, boasts beautiful landscapes and a temperate environment that tempts people from all across the globe to visit, recreate, and explore. Although the natural landscapes of Colorado create views that are next to none, it is the unique temperate environment that attracts a range of wildlife to really create the magnificent colors that are exclusive to this beautiful state. In particular, the temperate environment of Colorado plays host to over 400 species of birds, making Colorado a perfect destination for birding! Although some of these species are known to migrate through the colorful state during autumn, many more of these species are permanent residents year round. You, your family, and your friends can view these fascinating creatures year round by following a few simple steps to create a backyard sanctuary that is attractive to these species. Always keep in mind, like all other living creatures, birds rely on water, food, and shelter to survive.

Water Birds bathing and hydrating The most significant necessity to the survival of birds is finding a year-round water supply. You can make this supply of water your own responsibility by filling a birdbath up, or even by leaving a saucer full of water near the feeder in your yard. Throughout the colder months of winter you may need to use an electric de-icer to keep the water from freezing. An advantage of using a birdbath is that it provides a much needed safe spot for many birds to clean their feathers.

Food Like us hType of bird seed mix for premier birdingumans, birds have their favorite types of food. In order for you to attract your favorite feathery friend you must first figure out what their most desirable treat is, and make sure to supply it. For example, chickadees and finches like sunflower seeds; Steller’s jays and blue jays prefer peanuts, while white proso millet is the preferred food of juncos, sparrows, and mourning doves. The favorite food of pine siskins and some kinds of finches is the nyjer seed. Black oil sunflower seed is a favorite seed to feed in the winter because of its high oil content. Put out some peanuts in the shell, some tree nuts, or raisins for special treats and watch the birds learn to come for them within minutes.

Feeders As you may know, bird feeders come in a variety of different shapes and sizes.Specific type of feeder for birding While some can be mounted on a pole, others are able to be hung from trees, shrubs, a porch overhang, or even a bracket on the wall. Many birds desire a feeder that is placed near trees and shrubs as it offers natural protection from lingering predators. When choosing a feeder, make sure to choose one that is easy to fill and a breeze to clean. Most birds feed early in the morning and again at dusk. Despite the type of feeder that you choose, just make sure that it is full of seed and in a place where it can be easily viewed from a window, as it would be a shame to miss their early morning antics while enjoying your breakfast!

Shelter Birds also need shelter from the elements and predators. Natural shelter is provided by having a variety of shrubs and trees in your yard. When planning your garden to attract birds and other wildlife, include a variety Birdfeeder that is sheltered by shrubs and treesof evergreen and deciduous shrubs of different shapes and heights. You can also provide shelter by adding a bird house or two. Bird houses can be simple or complex and come in many sizes. Hole size is important in attracting specific kinds of birds. Make sure the house is equipped a removable panel so it can be cleaned between uses and a drainage hole so water doesn’t collect in the house.

Cleanliness Give your birds room to feed. Crowded bird feeders quickly become unsanitary as sick and healthy birds are pressed together. Depending on the amount of bird traffic you may want to have two feeders to alleviate the crowd. Clean off bird droppings as needed. Scrub the feeder with water using a brush with stiff bristles. To completely disinfect your feeders you can use a 10% chlorine bleach solution once a month. Soak the entire feeder in a bucket or spray it until the surface is soaked wet and let it sit 5 minutes. Then rinse with water and let it air dry before refilling. Keep the birds off the feeder until after it is rinsed.

CONTACT COLORADO ALPINES & WILDFLOWER FARM TODAY!

Colorado Alpines & Wildflower Farm in Edwards, CO, is a full-service landscape design company and garden center with a unique garden gift shop and year-round offerings including annual flowers, perennial flowers, garden supply products, and more.

Locally owned and operated since 1986, Colorado Alpines & Wildflower Farm offers landscaping services and garden supply for personal gardeners and professional landscapers alike in the Vail Valley, including the towns of Vail, Minturn, Eagle¬-Vail, Avon, Edwards, Wolcott, Eagle, Gypsum, and everywhere in between. If you have any gardening or landscaping questions, call us today at (970) 926-5504 or send us an email at info@thewildflowerfarm.com.

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