Better Backyard Birding

Spring is a great time to enjoy the wonderful variety of birds that are either full-time residents of the Rogue Valley or are part of the yearly migration of seasonal visitors. With just a small effort you can turn your yard into a bird oasis that will benefit the birds and give you great pleasure as you enjoy the remarkable beauty of birds. You can also challenge yourself or others in the household to identify and learn about all the different birds that frequent our yards.

Most of us already have yards that attract birds, but when landscaping for birds try to choose designs and plants that favor birds. More specifically this might include adding water features to your yard, fruiting and berry producing trees, and if you are truly committed try leaving a portion of your yard “wild” – weeds, brushpiles, and dead tree snag all provide food and roosting sites for birds. Of course one of the simplest methods of attracting birds to your yards is to place a feeder. Feeders come in a variety of styles – some designed to attract certain birds and others that will attract a wider variety.  A good choice is a feeder that will hold a reasonable quantity of a Black-Oil Sunflower seed. Place it hanging from a tree, a pole, or deck rail and you’ll be sure to have winged visitors. (Keep in mind that you might also have Squirrels visiting the feeders – you’ll either love them or they’ll drive you crazy!)

Once you have your feeder in place and your yard groomed to attract the birds sit back and see how many species come to visit! As a headstart to identifying your backyard birds concentrate on the following common species:  Darked-eyed Juncos, Black-capped Chickadees, Stellar’s and Scrub Jays, and Robins and Lesser and American Goldfinches. Less common but often seen in yards are Hermit and Varied Thrushes, Cedar Waxwings and especially in spring Evening and Black-headed Grosbeaks.

For help in choosing and setting up a feeder and the Rogue Valley’s best selection of high quality seed stop by the shop, and be sure to ask for our new free color Guide to Backyard Birds and Birdfeeding in the Rogue Valley for help in identifying all the birds in your yard!

Upcoming Events:

Build your own bird house! Saturday March 14th 11 am

Spring is the perfect time to build a birdhouse. This is a family-friendly project that includes hammering, and drilling. $7 donation to Siskiyou Audubon Society encouraged.

Ashland Pond Bird Walk Saturday, March 21st 9 am

Join Northwest Nature Shop’s expert birder Terence Philippe as we visit Ashland Pond, an Ashland birding hotspot.  Free. Sign up in advance.

Garden Stepping Stone Sunday, March 22nd 2 pm $10/person

Make a garden stone out of concrete and mosaics for your garden.   Sign up in advance.