“We know too much, and what might have been excused in other times can no longer stand up to reason. With that understanding comes moral responsibility.” ~ Wayne Pacelle
Some days, it’s good to curl up with a good book like I did this weekend with Humane Society of US Wayne Pacelle’s ‘The Bond: Our Kinship with Animals, Our Call to Defend Them.’ I can’t think of a better way to gobble up 350 pages of love than from my favorite easy chair in front of the community bird bath.
The view to the back — even without the birds — is pretty spectacular, and the main reason we bought this house so many years ago.
Here are some tips for bringing birds to you, right where you are.
Location, location, location. Be sure the water source is close to the window, but not too close. You want it to be sufficiently far away as to avoid bird strikes against the window which can kill or maim a bird, or draw the blinds partly to create ‘stripes’ across the glass on the outside.
Replace the water regularly. Scrub the birdbath with a stiff-bristle brush to remove any algae and mosquito larva that may have taken up shop. If the bath needs cleaning, do not use chlorine! Use household vinegar and some baking soda to lightly scrub away any deposits.
If possible, provide a drip line. A drip line source is a favorite for many bird species as it is the freshest to drink. You can catch the drips in their bathwater and they will love you for it.
Leave enough clearance for predator spotting. Neighborhood cats are the worst. Make sure the bath is well outside of pouncing distance. If you have Cooper’s Hawks (like we do), a few well-placed shrubs will give them safe-haven from any unexpected aerial attack.
Sit back from the window a bit. As it’s darker inside than out, they will not even notice your voyeurism just feet from them. Just slow and easy moves if you have to move at all, and you’re good to go.
Have your camera ready. Depending upon the window, you won’t even need a big lens! Just point and shoot through the clean spots in your window. Of course, a 600mm lens does help get some pretty birdie faces right up close.
Just arrived for winter!
Makes his ‘hawk mimic’ call coming in.
A Good Long Soak
Some days, it pays to be inside.
Damn. Read that book cover-to-cover in a day!