About us: We own the Wild Birds Unlimited nature shop in East Lansing, Michigan,
a store that provides a wide variety of supplies to help you enjoy the birdwatching hobby.

This blog was created to answer frequently asked questions & to share nature stories and photographs.
To contribute, email me at bloubird@gmail.com.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Preparing Your Yard For Wild Birds in the Spring

I hope everyone has caught up with the spring forward we did last weekend. Spring is just around the corner. Are you ready? If you haven’t already prepared your yard, I made a spring cleaning checklist to help.

Preparing Your Yard for the Spring:
1. Provide Nesting Spots- Place nest boxes and nesting material out for bluebirds, chickadees, nuthatches, sparrows, and other birds that might breed in mid-Michigan. Clean out and repair old nestboxes to allow birds the opportunity to nest in a warm, clean house. You can also plant natural shelters like trees or bushes.
2. Prepare Bird Baths- Scrub the bath with a good brush and change your water. There are also two different products available at Wild Birds Unlimited to help maintain the quality of the water. The first is a liquid you add each time you change the water or there is a tablet you leave in the water for a month.
Birdbath Cleaning Brush: This 8" brush is well suited for cleaning birdbaths, as well as for many other household uses. It has stiff, tough polypropylene bristles that will do the job well, and features a comfortable molded poly handle.
Microbe-Lift BirdBath Clear is a bio-enzymatic product specially formulated for birdbaths to prevent organic contaminants from forming including white scale deposits, iron, copper and hard water stains. It uses two unique proprietary technologies; one system helps to prevent the buildup of stains and mineral deposits on the birdbath surfaces, while the second system keeps water clear and free from the organic debris that can make the water cloudy.
Healthy Ponds Birdbath Dispenser treats birdbaths up to 7 gallons. Delivered with two disposable, floating plastic dispensers; each refill is effective for up to 30 days.
3. Clean Feeders - Feeders should be cleaned at least once a month, year round. Wild Birds Unlimited - East Lansing, MI- will clean your feeder for $5.00. Or you can purchase professional cleaners like Scoot or Poop-Off at Wild Birds Unlimited, or use one part vinegar to nine parts water solution to clean all of your feeders. Disassemble feeders and immerse them completely for three minutes. Scrub with brushes (we have these too), rinse thoroughly, and let air dry. Also clean the area around the feeders to help eliminate the build up around the feeder.
4. Feeder/Hardware Maintenance- Check your feeders to see if there are any repairs that need to be done. Make sure feeders are hung so they are easy to reach and fill. Find where you've stored your hummingbird and oriole feeders and give them a good cleaning.
If you are going to need a new Advanced Pole System to hang your feeders, now is a good time to come in to Wild Birds Unlimited - East Lansing, MI and get help designing a new feeding station.
5. Fill Feeders- Wild birds are already making decisions about which back yards they will nest in this season. Natural food sources are scarce right now and birds are definitely taking note of which yards have food available.