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.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

The Season of Song Begins

You may have noticed that as it gets lighter earlier that the birds are beginning to sing more. What triggers this change in behavior?

A key part of a bird’s brain is affected by seasonal change. When birds are exposed to longer days, the cells start to release a thyroid-stimulating hormone, previously associated only with growth and metabolism. It indirectly stimulates the pituitary gland to secrete further hormones called gonadotrophins, causing male birds' testicles to grow and, results in increased singing during breeding season.

So now is the time to be thinking about providing nesting material and nesting boxes to attract wild birds in your yard because there is nothing like birds’ songs to herald the approach of spring.


Joy K. said...

I will be brushing the cat today. Some bird is going to end up with a very soft nest.

Wild Birds Unlimited Mid-Michigan said...

Our birds love cat hair and will even fight in mid-air over the long white hair that comes from my cat's mane.

Last spring my nephew and I spent the morning brushing the cats. Then we climbed up high on a play set in the yard and tossed bits of fluff into the wind.

We had so much fun watching the birds swoop and dive to catch the hair. It was all gone in 15 minutes.