Birding

Want to add music, color, and movement to your garden? Birds are a natural way to bring life into a garden. Have you thought about birding? You can observe an array of birds right from the comfort of your own garden. Well-stocked feeders and reliable water sources encourage them to visit, and possibly nest, in your yard. Start birding today with the wide selection of products at Rohsler’s Nursery.

Everything you’ll need close to home

Rohsler’s has just what you need for all your birding needs. They have an array of birdhouses and birdbaths, top-quality seed, as well as all sorts of feeders to help attract birds to your garden.

Early spring is a great time to put up a thistle feeder. You will need a feeder or thistle sock expressly made for this small seed. Thistle will spill out of feeders made for larger seed. So make sure you get the proper feeders. The reward is well worth the investment! American Goldfinches, which put on “olive drab” plumage for the winter, are now beginning to molt into their fine golden plumage. Watch carefully as they change into their spring finery.

Enhance your feeder setup by adding suet. Suet provides birds from the Black-capped Chickadee to the Northern Cardinal with an extra boost. Woodpeckers particularly enjoy suet. In our area, Red-bellied, Hairy, and Downy woodpeckers are likely to come to your feeder.

Making a birdhouse into a home

Songbirds, which are also called passerines or perching birds, prefer to visit feeders featuring good cover. Plantings that allow for emergency exits are perfect for them. Place feeders near shrubs, trees, and garden plants. This allows birds to arrive and leave the feeding station safely.

The plants, trees, and shrubs you choose to grow in your garden will also affect your birding outcome. Many shrubs, including Rhododendrons and Forsythia, provide excellent cover for nesting birds such as Northern Mockingbirds and American Robins. Many birds also visit plants such as Coneflowers and Holly.

Hummingbirds gravitate toward tube-shaped flowers and particularly favor red blossoms. Some plants which attract hummingbirds are Salvia, Lantana, and Agastache. The Ruby-throated Hummingbird is the expected species in the eastern United States. However, watch for visitors from other parts of the country. Rufous, Allen’s, and Calliope hummingbirds have been spotted in our area, as well as other species.

Caution: Backyard birders run the risk of becoming bird chasers, or what the British call “twitchers.” Chasers are known for dropping everything, jumping in the car, and sometimes traveling great distances to see a rare bird. Consider yourself warned!